By Bond Collective Staff
Office environment plays a critical role in the way you work. If you can’t get comfortable or if important items are not easily accessible, your productivity, focus, and inspiration will suffer. Instead of giving up and calling it quits, use these office hacks to improve your working environment.
14 Best Office Hacks
1) Personalize Your Space
Encouraging your employees to personalize their spaces can add a dash of inspiration to an otherwise dull environment. Items like pictures, amusing sayings, and even some of the office hacks on this list make your employees’ desks more lively and stimulating.
And if you and your team work remotely or from different locations where you can’t leave your personal belongings overnight, carry a few of your favorite items in a backpack and unpack one, two, or all of them when you find a place to work.
Even just setting one item on the table at your favorite coffee house can help make the space more familiar and user-friendly. When you’re done for the day, repack the items in your bag so they’re ready for wherever you work tomorrow.
Not sure how to personalize your workspace for inspiration? Here are some simple, easy-to-incorporate suggestions:
Pick your favorite color and place three or four items of that color on your desk
Scatter various-colored items along the perimeter of your desk
Choose brightly colored items to boost productivity, engagement, and overall happiness
Incorporate various materials and textures on your desk (e.g., wood, fabric, metal)
These simple office hacks will promote a sense of wellness and creativity throughout the day, wherever you happen to work.
2) Make A Template For Easier Hanging
Need to hang an item on the wall with specific holes (like a power strip)? Make a photocopy of the back and use it as a template to mark where to drill or nail. You’ll get the perfect placement every time.
3) Corral Cords With A Metal Basket
Is that cord tangle under your desk driving you crazy? Hide the mess with a metal basket.
Screw four metal cup hooks into the underside of your desk around the perimeter of the metal basket (be sure to give your knees plenty of room to move). Then run all your cords through the basket to keep them corralled.
Using cup hooks instead of screws or nails makes for fast installation and removal. Just push the basket up until it’s flush with the desk, turn two of the hooks 90 degrees, and remove the container for easy access.
You can even run cords out at all angles to accommodate numerous devices.
4) Place A Plant On The Corner Of Your Desk
Want to reduce your stress and anxiety? Want to boost your morale and productivity? Want to transform your workspace from sterile to inspiring? Add a plant.
This simple and inexpensive office hack is a low-maintenance solution that will make you happier and more at ease, resulting in increased focus and engagement.
A small bonsai tree or cactus is ideal for this office hack. They are hearty, easy to transport (they fit in a backpack or tote bag), and don’t take up a lot of space on your desk.
5) Spice Up Your Office Supplies
Office supplies — like paper clips, thumbtacks, binder clips, and other tiny items — can be nearly impossible to organize. Instead of hiding them in a drawer, use a spice rack to keep them tidy and on display for all to see.
6) Repurpose A Spring For Notes And Letters
Letter holders are a wonderful way to keep notes and correspondence organized. But for those of us on the go, they can be difficult to carry. That’s where this office hack comes into play.
Remove a spring from an old pen (or buy a bigger one for more stability) and stack your notes and letters horizontally between the rolls of wire. Quick, easy, organized.
7) Wear Earplugs Or Noise-Canceling Headphones
If you work in a noisy environment but you really need to focus, considering wearing earplugs or noise-canceling headphones. They may not block the sound completely, but they will reduce it enough that you can tune it out.
And if you choose noise-canceling headphones, you can always queue your favorite work music to help you concentrate.
8) Tidy Your Desk With Tape
If you want to be happier and healthier while you work, wherever you work, tidy your workspace with this quick office hack.
Wrap some packing tape around your hand with the sticky side out. Then start cleaning. Crumbs, pencil shavings, shreds of paper, even small pieces of broken glass will stick to the tape and can then be easily discarded.
This office hack is especially useful for cleaning hard-to-reach places that collect a lot of dust and crumbs. Your computer keyboard is a prime example.
Keyboards are one of the dirtiest tools on your desk, and cleaning them can be a real pain. So much so that you’re likely to skip this important step. The next time you’re tidying up your working environment, use this office hack instead of overlooking the place that needs cleaning the most.
Run a strip of clear tape through the spaces between keys to extract all the dust, crumbs, and dead skin cells that pile up with repeated use.
9) Transform A Cassette Case Into A Smartphone Stand
Remember cassette tapes? They were all the rage before CDs (which were all the rage before MP3s and streaming music).
While cassette tapes are pretty much useless in modern society, the cases they came in make for excellent smartphone stands.
Open a cassette tape case all the way, place it on your desk, insert your phone, and you’ve got an inexpensive yet effective stand that’s both a conversation starter and a nice piece of nostalgia.
10) Mount Your Tablet With Self-Adhesive Hooks
Want to free up desk space and declutter your work environment? Try this office hack.
Press two self-adhesive hooks to the wall and place your tablet in the grooves. Now you can see your device while you work without having to hold it.
11) Clean Your Dirty Screen With A Coffee Filter
Whether you use a large desktop monitor or a small tablet screen all day, those surfaces are going to get dirty.
In the absence of a microfiber cloth (which is the best option), use a clean coffee filter. The softness and high fiber count of the filter will remove even the toughest of smudges.
12) Control The Clutter
Let’s face it: clutter is distracting. The sense of disorganization that surrounds a cluttered workspace can seriously affect the happiness and productivity of your team. So before you attempt to improve your working environment by adding things, try removing things.
Here are a few suggestions for decluttering your office environment:
Hire a commercial cleaner
Go wireless if possible
Invest in storage solutions
Provide each team member with a personal storage space
Minimize items on your desk
We’re sure that, with some thought, you’ll come up with plenty of unique ways to keep your office environment clutter-free.
13) Take A Natural-Light Break
New research shows that natural light has a significantly positive effect on mood, focus, and productivity. Get a healthy dose of natural light by sitting near a window or going outside every hour or two. Even just five minutes of light exposure is enough to improve your mood.
If sitting near a window or going outside isn’t physically possible, the next best solution is to use a small desk lamp that mimics natural light with softer wavelengths.
New technology even allows lamps like these to change automatically from the cooler greens and blues that occur in the morning to the warmer yellows and reds that occur in the afternoon.
14) Rig Up A Binder-Clip Headphone Hanger
Working in an open office is one of the best ways to collaborate, but it can be noisy at times. Headphones are the obvious solution, but they take up quite a bit of desk space if not stored correctly.
Instead of placing your headphones ON your desk, buy a large binder clip and clip it to the edge of your desk. Fold the arms back so they stick out away from your desk and hang your headphones there.
The Best Working Environment With Or Without Office Hacks
Office hacks are fun and useful — up to a point. While they may solve minor problems in the short term, the DIY nature of some of these solutions can reduce the professional appearance of your working environment.
Bond Collective offers boutique coworking environments that are available immediately for businesses of all sizes. In addition to our unique office settings, members also enjoy convenient amenities, such as:
Private-label mail service
Daily on-site cleaning
Guest reception and greeting
Insanely fast Wi-Fi
Concession food market
Tour our gorgeous office spaces in New York (Bushwick, 55 Broadway, 60 Broad, Gowanus, Flatiron) and Philadelphia (The Station House) to experience the best that modern office spaces have to offer. Then become a member of Bond Collective and take advantage of our coworking spaces, dedicated desks, and private offices to suit all your business needs.
To get started or to learn more about the advantages of coworking spaces for digital nomads, remote workers, and businesses of all kinds, visit BondCollective.com today.