What does your ideal workspace look like? Is it a simple cubicle with a desk drawer for filing your office paperwork? Your own office? A home office? How about one long, shared workspace with little office storage space for your clutter? Is it indoors? Outdoors with no wall space? Is it a remote location or one where you have lots of coworkers and face-to-face meetings?
Most of us have never really stopped to wonder how we would design the perfect work sanctuary, but actually, lots of research goes into understanding office organization and how a company can get the most productivity and effective time management out of its workers. Looking back at movies set in the 1920s, office scenes have a very factory-like feel: one big, open floor space with desks aligned in rows and positioned with one supervisor’s desk at the front of the room.
With the introduction of modern air conditioning and lighting, office organizing changed; offices gradually evolved into the cubicle arrangement of the 1960s, but only in the last 20-30 years have companies shrunk the cubicle size, leaving GenXers craving the open office space layout of the 1990s and early 2000s.
The open workspace with a shared desk layout is still around today—this is the layout and type of office organization seen in the background of Buzzfeed videos, where everyone has their own computer and space (and maybe built-in storage or a filing cabinet) at one long desk or table, but now, the remote Millennial worker has determined the need for a new type of workspace. Shared, collaborative “coworking” spaces, like Orange Coworking in Austin, Texas, allow for much greater flexibility and accommodate a variety of learning styles and a broad range of fields of study.
With such a large assortment of office types and design options, it’s important to find your focus, stay organized and be as productive as you can be, so here are 15 products that you can use to create your home away from home and add some Zen to your workspace or home office.
Calendars and Planners
Months, weeks, days—regardless of how you like to divide the year, there is an endless variety of paper planners and calendars—so you can definitely find an organizer you like.
Pour Veus and Mellow Pattern Desk Pads from MochiThings—a desk pad is a tidy way to keep your planner within reach but out of sight. These two are simple but pretty, and it’s difficult to find a desk pad that is decorative or personalized.
Sushi and Mr. Babba Slim Weekly Planners from MochiThings—weekly planners are another compact solution, fitting under a monitor or along a keyboard. For a more modern look, these two are cute but would still blend in on a professional desk.
Vintage Fairy Tale Yearly Planner from MochiThings—traditional yearly planners have the most options available, and there’s something for everyone. A fan of fairy tales has their pick of these vintage schedulers.
Geometric and Par Un Beau Jour Yearly Planners from MochiThings—geometric designs are always in style, and these planners are a beautiful choice for those who like to take their planners everywhere they go.
Poppin Yearly Planners from The Container Store—for a cleaner, simpler, super organized look, these planners come in bright solid colors, to match the full line of Poppin office organizer sets.
Wipebook and Rocketbook Reusable Notebooks from The Grommet—finally, the technologically savvy can look to planners that can be erased and reused again and again. (Caution: I have not used these personally but have read reviews of notebooks being misused or catching fire accidentally. These planners are very cool, but…use with care.)
Notes and Knick Knacks
My desk is constantly covered in clutter, like sticky notes and paperwork—on the desk, on my computer, on my keyboard and my planner… If that sounds like you, here are a few ways to organize the stream of thought happening all over your desk.
Monster and Magnetic Clipboards from MochiThings and The Grommet—IMO, notes on a legal pad call for a great clipboard. The Monster clipboard is fun (and my personal favorite is the science-themed), while the Magnetic clipboard is useful for notes of all types and sizes. With the ability to hold any size page using the magnetic clip, this clipboard is universally useful.
Transparent Monitor Memo Board and the Mountie Device Clip—When your computer is home base, monitor attachments can be a useful way to keep notes and your to-do list and phones off the desk and out of the way. These two are sleek, simple, and easy to use.
So, go get started on the workspace of your dreams! This is only the tip of the iceberg! In addition to all of these items, there are wall-mounted organization systems; desk attachments for purses, bags, and drinks; monitor risers with built-in storage; and charge docks for devices, not to mention much, much, much more. Have fun with it, and create an office space that inspires you!
Full disclosure: Neither the author nor Fairygodboss endorses or is paid by the companies whose products are featured here. For more resources on loving where you work and improving your workplace happiness and managing your to-do list, check out “10 Ways to be Unbeatable in the Office.“
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