Despite the fact that we spend so much of our lives at work, our working environment can often get overlooked as an afterthought – a non-important part of our day-to-day lives. But with research showing that untidy and chaotic spaces can lead to reduced productivity and increased stress, it may be time to take action. 

From desks filled with stacks upon stacks of unnecessary papers to those decorated with old coffee rings and chewed up pens, chaotic work zones are not only an eye-sore but a serious hindrance to our organisational and timekeeping potential. If this sounds all too familiar, read on for some top tips on maximising your desk space at work, starting with one all-important question…

What is the minimum size for an office desk?

If you’re stuck with a cramped desk that feels more like a postage stamp than a decent place to work, you may be wondering if there’s a legal minimum size for desks in the UK. Unfortunately, while there are legal requirements about the space between desks, there are no regulations around how big or small your desk itself is – which leads us on to our next key question…

How do I maximise my desk space? 

Whether you’re stuck with a tiny desk or simply find that you can’t keep the clutter at bay, it helps to have a few tricks up your sleeve to maximise your workspace. Here are some top tips for ensuring you keep your desk clean, tidy and organised, day after day:

  1. Get inventive with storage: Asides from going full-digital, one way you can keep the papers at bay is to utilise the space under your desk for storage too. Try placing a streamlined set of drawers by your feet, and enjoy a clutter-free zone up above.
  2. Have a daily clear-out policy: Instead of waiting for your desk to get overrun with old papers, magazines and files, clear away the things you’re done with at the end of every day to keep the mess at bay.
  3. Control your cables: Make sure all wires and cables are neatly routed in the same direction and hidden under your desk to prevent them from eating up valuable space.
  4. Get a wireless mouse and keyboard: On the subject of controlling cables, it can also help to try and reduce them altogether by going wireless with the things you can.
  5. Rarely use the phone? Get rid of it: Ask your manager if you can give up your desk phone and jump onto a shared one on the odd occasion you need to make a call.
  6. Have wipes close to hand: Tackle those pesky tea stains as they appear with anti-bacterial wipes, which should also help keep unwanted germs under control too. Win-win.

Finally, how can I decorate my small desk? 

An organised desk is all well and good, but sometimes it’s the homely finishing touches that truly make for a calm, enjoyable workspace. Here are some quick tips for decorating even the smallest of desks:  

  1. Use a hanging wire for photos instead of letting clunky frames eat up precious desk space.
  2. Make sure all your stationery is colourful, quirky or chic.
  3. Place a couple of miniature but tasteful succulent plants in the dead space under your computer screen.
  4. Swap your bland daily mug for something bold and stylish.
  5. Place some funky cushions onto your office chair to liven up your space and provide an added bit of homely comfort too. 

Working in a small, cramped space can feel stressful and counterproductive, but with these simple tips and tricks, you’ll be on your way to a clean, stylish and 100% clutter-free work zone in no time. Enjoy!

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