In the movie ‘The Intern’, young entrepreneur Jules Ostin — played by Anne Hathaway — has a pet peeve; it’s an office desk that has become the unofficial “stock room” for things that have been discarded, mostly samples of the products Ostin’s online business delivers to shoppers. It has become so annoying that when Ben Whittaker, the 70-year-old ‘intern’ played by Robert De Niro, clears the desk, what he did was celebrated as a minor company milestone. You may not have something like that desk in your office, but that’s only because every desk in your office is slowly becoming like it.
The problem with clutter
Clutter in the office is responsible for reduced productivity and heightened mental concerns. Who would feel up and ready to work in the morning when they arrive to a desk with mountains of clutter? Do you even remember when that began to happen? Don’t be surprised to find a receipt from a business lunch you had with a colleague who moved to another country two years ago. Clutter is like that: it stacks up until you can barely recognise your own workspace.
What to do with clutter
The only sane thing to do with clutter is to remove it. If you own the business or are the department’s manager or supervisor, tell your people to clear their desks of unwanted things. Once a week, hire skip bins in Armadale and have your employees toss out whatever they don’t need or haven’t used in a while that’s sitting on their desk. It may take a bit of convincing to make them throw out what they may have an emotional attachment with, but it’s for the best. If they can’t get rid of the thing, have them take it home (if it’s personal anyway). If you can stop them from eating at their desks, do so. You have an office kitchen or cafeteria for that purpose.
Clutter is distraction for most people. You’ll notice yourself and your employees becoming more productive when the office is free from such distractions. The stress levels in your office will go down and you’ll feel thankful you got rid of all that clutter.