Your workspace is an extension of who are you and how you work. Did you know others may be able to gain better insight of you and your personality just by viewing your desk? Take a good look at your desk, and then consider what it may be telling others. Scary? We understand!
OK—now look around at your colleague’s desks. Do their spaces resemble who they are? Are their desks messy with piles and stacks of folders, papers and more? Or are their desks tidy, with family pictures and vase of flowers?
According to an infographic, by Brother, 41% of employees believe a tidy and organised workspace is key to enhancing productivity. On the same infographic, 1 in 4 said messy colleagues have a negative impact on their own productivity. And one more statistic from this infographic says that 1 in 10 bosses say a messy desk would stop them from promoting an employee. That’s very insightful information.
Now you may have an understand about your desk may be saying to others. We each spend a great part of the day at our desks and we’re all different and work differently. However, your workspace may have a negative impact on your work. So, just what can your desk let others know about you?
1). Messy Desks
You may know such people, or you may be one, but people with a messy desk, chaotic environment and clutter may viewed as more extroverted and more approachable by others. People who are messy may prefer to have everything “laid out,” so they can work more efficiently.
While that may be true, the impression a messy desk leaves with others may be quite negative. People may view the chaotic workspace as someone who lacks necessary skills, that they don’t care about the impression they leave with others, and more. Others may also view the messy chaos as a sign that a colleague’s depressed with his work.
Messy people may be seen as creative, but with nothing to show for their efforts. And the mess may be causing others in the office to feel anxious and overwhelmed. They may fear the mess will eventually make it to their own workspace.
2). Clean, Organised Desks
Then there are other colleagues, who may work in the same office, who keep their desk and work environment entirely neat and almost spartan by comparison. What does this mean about the person using that workspace? These people tend to want control, they follow the rules, and are concerned about appearances. It may also be a sign of minimalism, which is looked on with favour by many startups as part of their company image and reputation.
The person with a neat desk may also show they like to keep distractions to a minimum. You won’t find any lost office items here. They’ll likely know where each of their work and personal items is located. These employees may also be seen as hardworking and reliable, and that they like to achieve goals.
However, to others, their neat colleague may appear boring, without personality and that the person may not plan on staying with the company very long. And we must warn you—a very tidy desk may present an unrelenting temptation to others in the office. They may not be able to resist the strong urge to mess up the desk, just to make it a little more like the rest of the office.
3). Accomplishments & More on Display
Then there are the employees who are goal-oriented and work hard. These people may enjoy displaying their accomplishments on their desks, the walls of their office/cubicle, and more. Here, you may find college degrees, awards, motivational quotes, and even inspirational posters. These may all be signs that person is a successful problem solver.
However, colleagues may view this person as one who is bragging about their accomplishments to colleagues. That can be a negative and discouraging, as these people may not be seen as team-players.
4). The “Sickie” Desk
The problem here is that if a colleague’s desk is that an employee may give the impression they’re not dependable. Their desk may include tissue boxes, medications, and other indications the person has health issues. This is the person who shows up for work, even if they’re supposed to be home resting. On the other hand, this may be a person who frequently calls in sick due to a runny nose.
In addition, the person’s workspace may be off limits to others due to allergies. They may have an ergonomic chair and other equipment, and if you need hand sanitiser, they’re the go-to-person.
The impression is these people may not be reliable, they may be out quite a bit, and are constantly falling behind in their work. When they do come back to work, they’re too busy getting caught up to stay on top of tasks.
5). The Techie
Here, you’ll find a plethora of technology—everything from the latest laptops and desktops, to chargers and wires for all their gizmos. Their desk may be neat or chaotic but may resemble an electronic store. These employees also tend to push for the latest in tech, being curious and wanting to experiment. This may come under the guise of making the entire office run more efficiently.
Colleagues may find it difficult to relate to their techie counterpart. This may be due to the person’s constant use of tech jargon, which will not be understood by anyone else in the office. Other may also fear that this person could be a safety hazard due to all the wires and devices in their workspace.
However, others in the office may not be charmed with their techy colleagues. Some may find these people difficult to work with and find the push for innovative technology too much to handle. But they may be the go-to person when things go wrong, which is a positive on their side.
Have you found your desk and workspace described here? If so, you may want to consider how others view you based on your workspace. Try to aim for an uncluttered, organised workspace, and then you’ll fit in well with almost everyone. If you need chaos, wait until you get home and then you can indulge.