Collecting office clutter doesn’t just look bad, it can be detrimental to the productivity and health of your employees. In our busy lifestyles, it can be easy to lose track of what is piling up around the office. Taking time throughout your work week to clean and maintain both your desk and entire office can help your business become healthier, happier and more productive.
Here’s 6 reasons having a clean and tidy office is important to your business.
Reducing clutter reduces stress
What emotions does your workspace elicit when you arrive? Is it easy to focus and get on with your work, or are you constantly shuffling through documents and mess?
When it comes to traditional offices, the majority of clutter will come from paper documents. Without an organised system for storing documents and records, it becomes easy to misplace important pieces of information and difficult to find them when needed. Researchers at the Princeton University Neuroscience Institute found that when your environment is cluttered, the chaos restricts your ability to focus and process information, which inevitably leads to stress.
If your office struggles with clutter created from poor document organisation, you should develop document guidelines. The guidelines should outline what documents need to be kept and what can be removed, shredded and thrown out. Current and recent documents should be stored on site in an easily accessible location, whereas older documents that need to be kept for recordkeeping and legal reasons can be stored off-site in storage.
All documents should be organised in a way that allows access to anyone who might need to find them.
Cleanliness inspires confidence
The office space of a company can be a clear reflection of its values and abilities. Think about who comes in and see’s your office, first impressions count in all aspects of life. Clients, colleagues, potential employees, vendors and other visitors could be influenced by the state of your office.
Mess, disorganisation, dirty areas and general clutter will not instil confidence in your professionalism and ability to prioritise and manage the finer details. Promote cleanliness as part of your office culture and set aside time for the whole office to clean their areas as a team. This will not only get your work space clean, but provides opportunity for bonding and improved relationships, which is great for employee engagement.
A clean office means healthy employees
It’s often difficult to keep employees away from work if their sick. Deadlines and expectation pressures see many workers head into the office regardless of their health. A recent UK study found that 70% of workers still go to work when they’re ill.
When one sick person comes into work, they put the entire office in jeopardy. Cold and flu viruses can stick around on hard surfaces for up to 20 hours, so it’s imperative that you, as an employer, address this. Ensure employees know they can take sick days, wipe down hard surfaces with anti-bacterial wipes and encourage your staff to wash their hands regularly.
Eating in the office is a bad habit
Bouncing off the knowledge that viruses can live for up to 20 hours on your desk, it might be wise to not eat there. There has been claims that an average keyboard has similar bacteria levels as a toilet seat.
Eating away from your desk will help ensure you don’t attract an infection, as well as clearing your mind before getting back to work.
Tidiness is great for focus
As we’ve mentioned, clutter restricts your ability to focus and process information. Prioritising what needs to be done can be near impossible if you have several projects open at your desk. Clear your desk of everything except what you need to complete.
This refers to both physical and digital clutter. Many people have computer desktops full of random documents. Set aside time to make designated folders for each project, client or job and ensure all the information for each is saved to its specific folder. Now you should be able to find things quickly and easily.
Surroundings can affect moods
Your surroundings and environment can have huge effects on your mood. An office that is organised and easy to move around in will not only make working easier, but can boost the morale of your employees. Ask your staff what they would like in the office, and see how you can improve it.
Having a clean and tidy office is important for business owners. It ensures the health of employees while also promoting focus and productivity. If your office needs a lot of work, set aside some time for your whole office to work together to get things organised.