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Do you care about a messy desk?



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Does the sight of an employee’s messy desk make you shudder? Apparently, most human resources professionals aren’t fussed about a cluttered workspace – in fact, many believe it’s a sign of creativity.

A recent survey from OfficeTeam found 68% of HR leaders found it ‘somewhat’ acceptable to have a messy desk at work, while 9% said it was a positive trait of a creative person.

However, around a third still believed that an employee with a messy workspace could have questionable productivity and organisational skills.

“Although not everyone cares about how your desk looks, having a messy workspace could lead others to question your professionalism,” said Robert Hosking, executive director of OfficeTeam.

If you’ve got a problem with messy employees, perhaps you could send these tips from OfficeTeam to your team:

  1. Avoid creating a pileup. Unnecessary paperwork should be recycled or shredded and everything else should be scanned or filed away neatly.
  2. Use containers to keep items in their place.
  3. Do not hoard supplies. Chances are, if you hardly touch something, it is not needed and shouldn’t be there to clutter your desk. Supplies that are used most often should be kept in reach and everything else should be kept out of sight.
  4. Be tech-savvy. Go paperless with a digital filing system or organisational application and you will find that it is easier to keep track of everything and access necessary information.
  5. Do not over decorate your workspace. While it is generally fine to show some personality by decorating your workspace, over decorating with life-sized stuff toys and huge posters can make your workspace look unkempt.
  6. Clear your work surface after eating. A desk covered in food wrappers, empty cups and dirty plates does not look very professional.
  7. Clean up your desk every now and then. A few minutes spent at the end of each day can prevent clutter from accumulating on your desk and it also helps you get a faster start the next morning.

“Keep your desk tidy and you’ll be able to find what you need more quickly and increase your work efficiency,” Hosking added.

Image: Shutterstock

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