By Aisha Newton
Monster Contributing Writer
The office space was formerly a bastion of tranquility. There was once a time when going to work meant having an office, your own personal space in which to work and gather your thoughts. Nowadays more and more of us spend the bulk of our waking hours crammed into corners, cubicles and makeshift workstations.
Gone are the corner offices with a window and view. These are reserved for the upper echelons of the company. Say hello to close quarters, fabric covered walls, and bland colour schemes.
The landscape of the typical office environment can be pretty bleak. I remember working for a company that employed the use of cubicles. Management had decided that this was the most efficient use of space. Everyday I would come to work and meander my way through a vast labyrinth of fabric covered walls and faux wood desks.
Unfortunately we don’t have control over the look of the office. In a perfect world we could call up one of those cheeky TV design shows. The whole building would be made over in 30 minutes or less. Reality check; that is probably not going to happen. Instead you can do little things to make your workspace more enjoyable.
Try personalizing your space
. There is no reason to suffer with a grotesque desk. A few nicely framed photographs can help raise your spirits. Pictures of friends, family heck even the family pet. Whatever image you choose, just keep it classy. You might love the boudoir pictures your girlfriend gave you but everyone else really doesn’t need to see them. Same goes for you ladies. While I applaud your charitable endeavours let’s keep the sexy, shirtless firefighters at home.
A few decorations can go a long way. A nice calendar, poster or a few small chatskis can add a splash of colour and fun. I worked with a guy who was obsessed with cars. He kept a few Hot Wheels sitting at his desk. They were fun and helped keep him motivated. Whatever knick knacks you choose keep it clean and professional. Lining your cubicle with shot glasses and liquor bottles will probably get you reprimanded. A few small items can be fun but building a pink shrine to Hello Kitty doesn’t exactly scream professionalism
Having a plant at your desk can also be nice. A bit of greenery can help brighten the office environment. When you spend the entire day indoors, having a bit of nature up close and personal can be refreshing. Just try to stick to plants that aren’t heavily scented. A nice Cactus or some Bamboo could do the trick. The last thing you want is to have your little green space making your coworkers sneeze.
People love animals, but unless you work in a pet friendly environment bringing Fido to work might be tough. That being said, I had a friend that kept her pet goldfish at her desk. She would feed him and keep the bowl clean. He was the office mascot and people loved the little guy.
Another simple change could be to your screensaver, a beautiful landscape, humorous picture or anything that can help you escape your surroundings. Playing music can also help but just be mindful of the volume. I once had a colleague who would get so caught up in the music that she would sing at her desk. The office is no place for Karaoke, ease up on the singing and play some music that puts you in a good mood.
Don’t be afraid to let your personality shine through
. A gumball machine or small candy dish can add some fun. Everyone loves candy and it’s the office equivalent of a welcome mat. After all who doesn’t love the office candy person?
Some people accessorize with their own fun office supplies, a funky stapler, fun mouse-pad or even a sassy notebook. Whatever you decide to add, try to keep things neat and tidy. There is no sense in having a beautiful workspace if you can't access the things you need to do your job.
Try to have fun and enjoy your workspace. In some cases we spend more time at work than we do at home. Hopefully by following these simple tips you can take your desk from grotesque to success!