Posted: June 22, 2007
I spent the better part of last weekend working at home and in the office. Why? I have no idea. But I felt this urge to get organized. Consequently, I spent at least three hours organizing my desk(s), two work tables and some old files. The exercise reminded me how easy it is for any one of us to be satisfied with being dysfunctionally organized. In other words, if you are like me, we try to tell ourselves that our work life is intact, yet we know that we could always be doing more to stay on top of things. Remember, I always think I am organized. It just does not look too pretty from the other side of my office desk.
I read a recent study by a behaviorial psychologist named Donna Dawson that stated that persons who maintain "The Organized Chaos Desk " have a personality that "has piles of paper...The owner will claim to have a 'filing system' where they can easily find what they are looking for...While they are likely to be a workaholic, they are fun to chat with and are flexible and brilliant for brainstorming." That's me.
At least I would like to think so when a psychologist talks about being flexible and brilliant.
I have a hard time seeing people who have what I like to call a "Neat Freak Desk". I suppose the office manager and/or front line individual who is the first to see customers should probably have a clean desk, but I still wonder whether those workers have too much time on their hands or are just so darn efficient that it makes everyone else feel sick.
I have been on plenty of sales calls where I observe that the advertising prospect's desk looks a lot like mine. But upon further review, I notice that none of the piles on his/her desk is related to one another. In other words, this person's "Piler Desk " is not an organized setup at all.
I admire desks that "Show Off " their accomplishments. These are the office managers or small business owners who usually work in insurance, finance or investments, banking or some other important position. These desks exude class. Sometimes there may be a small award that is a reminder that I am talking to a professional who has confidence. Plus, these types of individuals usually have a candy jar on their desk for visitors.
I wish I could have a "Show Off Desk ". Unfortunately, I do not have too many professional accolades and I do not get many visitors to have the opportunity to offer up any free candy. Personally, I prefer my "Organized Chaos Desk", especially since I know I would eat all of the candy if I waited for the guests to arrive.