Tidy up your desk: This is how the workplace stays tidy


Writed by - Andy Gocker
  Tidy up your desk: This is how the workplace stays tidy
The motto on the desk is: Less is more. © Didecs/Shutterstock.com, SpotOn

Organized into the working year

A large part of everyday working life takes place at the desk. It is therefore important to create a pleasant working atmosphere. Surrounded by piles of documents, colorful notes and pens lying around, it is difficult to feel comfortable.

Clutter has also been shown to have a negative impact on performance: a Harvard University study found that students who sat at a clutter-free desk worked 7.5 minutes longer than those who completed the same task in a cluttered workspace. A chaotic desk can therefore 'impair endurance when completing tasks'. In addition, Michigan University found that people with a cluttered desk are more likely to be perceived as careless, unattentive, or neurotic.

That means: If you want to make a good impression and increase your productivity, pay attention to cleanliness in the workplace. With the following step-by-step instructions, your desk will be tidy - and stay that way.

clearing and cleaning

In a first step, it is worth freeing the piece of furniture from all objects. This applies to the surface as well as to drawers and compartments. Clean after emptying and do not put away yet. Because as long as the desk is empty, it can be moved more easily.

Relay a message

If you are thinking about a change of location, you should ensure that there is sufficient daylight. This promotes concentration and the production of the happiness hormone serotonin. Despite the proximity to the window, a good view of the screen must be guaranteed.

If the table height can be adjusted, there is also an opportunity to do so in this step. The ideal height is between 63 and 75 centimetres, depending on your height. The forearms rest loosely on the tabletop while the upper arms hang relaxed from the shoulders. Align the table and chair until a comfortable sitting position is achieved. Then place the monitor at least an arm's length away. The top of the screen should be at or slightly below eye level. A laptop stand makes working on the notebook easier.

cleaning out

After alignment, it's time to clean up. For a better overview, tidying up expert Marie Kondo advises using categories such as 'stationery' or 'documents'. Then check the objects and papers for functionality and up-to-dateness and sort them out if necessary.


All leftover office utensils are assigned a fixed place. So-called organizers take care of the system. These are available as inserts for drawers or for setting up on the table. Frequently used items such as pens, paperclips or notes should always be to hand. Speaking of notes: Instead of writing down to-dos on post-its, it is advisable to keep a list in book form. Paper waste is significantly less compared to sticky notes that can be written on on one side.

Larger, loose sheets can be collected in labeled folders or compartments. Folders are suitable for filing documents that you want to keep for the long term. Compartments, on the other hand, are used for temporarily required papers. Bound items such as magazines or brochures can be stored in standing folders. An open shelf or a roll container is suitable for storage.


If you like, you can loosen up the sterile office atmosphere with decorative elements at the end. In order to keep the risk of distraction as low as possible, it should be used sparingly. A good choice is decoration with a practical function, such as an original letter holder or an air-purifying plant.

Keep order

In order to maintain the newly created order permanently, it is best to put used items back in their place after use. Documents that have been processed and are no longer needed end up in the wastebasket under the desk. It is even better not to print them out at all, but to edit them on the computer. But be careful: It is also important to keep order on the digital desk.

If you don't have time to tidy up in the hectic everyday work, you can invest a few minutes before the end of the day. That way, chaos doesn't stand a chance and everything doesn't happen at once.

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