So you’ve just landed your dream job?
You can’t wait to walk into your office and start working for this new company that you’ve fallen in love with!
But you begin to rethink your feelings for this company when you see your cubicle! Your cubicle looks rather small and you wonder how you’ll be productive in it.
But before you think of burying your face in the copy machine, there are solutions to improving your new workspace.
Here’s how to work in a cubicle, no matter how small it is:
1. Organize Your Space
The first step to being productive in a cubicle is to properly organize your belongings.
You might wish to invest in portable partitions to help you separate your items for easier access. This also helps you reduce any possible clutter.
For example, do you work with several clients at once? Do you have large files representing each client’s account?
If so, you’ll likely have clients who need urgent attention and others who can be attended to at a later stage. You can keep these urgent files closest to your computer. Keep the other files in a corner of your cubicle.
You want to also try to be a minimalist as much as possible. Have a small pencil case where you keep a few pens and pencils. You want to make sure they never create any clutter.
Make sure that anything you need to grab is within arms’ reach. For example, your computer should be in the middle of the cubicle. If you don’t need to use your smartphone often, keep it in a corner of the cubicle.
Try to optimize space by placing objects in compartments. If you need to use a lot of gadgets, make sure they aren’t lying around the cubicle. Buy a small box or case where you can keep cables, USB drives, tools, etc.
You also want to make sure that before you leave your cubicle, that you leave it clean. If the clutter develops over time, you’ll see a major decrease in your productivity.
2. Decorate Your Cubicle
The next step is to decorate your cubicle to boost your productivity.
For example, you can start by keeping small photos of your loved ones. This is a rite of passage for many professionals.
Especially if you have a family, looking at their photos reminds you why you work hard each day!
You can also put photos of anything that inspires you. For example, if you work as a content writer you can keep an image of your favorite writers at work.
Think of how much inspiration you’ll have when you look up at a picture of Gary Halbert, David Ogilvy, or Joseph Sugarman while you’re typing away at your computer!
You should also think about what colors can elevate your mood while you work. The other objects in your cubicle should match these colors that help you be more productive.
If you like the color blue, maybe your coffee mug can match this color. If you like black, you can buy a black pencil case.
Even the colors of the frames of your photos can add to the ambiance of your cubicle.
Of course, not every image has to be work-related. You can put a small poster of your favorite film or TV show. This helps relax your mind and helps you take your mind off work when you take a break.
It’s also a great way to have an icebreaker during a lunch break. Your colleagues might notice these posters and might want to have a discussion about the films or TV shows.
3. Have “Fun” Items in Your Cubicle
Part of your decorations is also what items you use during your break times. Do you prefer to read a book or listen to music when you’re on a break?
Keep a copy of a book in your cubicle at all times. Or keep your MP3 player near your computer. This reminds you to take a break and gives you something to look forward to.
There should always be some items that aren’t related to your work. It’s also best that these items pull you away from your computer.
When you’re on your break, you should do something other than browsing the internet.
You can also think about other items that bring you comfort. These can include a small desk fan. It can also include a small plant.
When you walk into your office, you should feel welcomed by your cubicle. Think about what items will make you feel inspired to strive for excellence.
4. Don’t Forget About Nourishment
Let’s face it — working in a cubicle can make you feel like you’re trapped in solitary confinement!
You want to find a way to boost your energy at all times. As such, there should be space within your cubicle for nourishment.
We mentioned keeping a coffee mug in your cubicle earlier. Make sure that it’s full of coffee or tea at all times. Alternatively, keep a few bottles of water or your favorite soda in your cubicle.
You can also keep a few snacks in your cubicle. At the end of each workday, you should keep these in a corner. This way, your cubicle doesn’t seem cluttered with your food.
When you start your workday, put a few snacks near your computer. These snacks can include chips, candy, protein bars, etc.
If you really want to make sure that you work productively while stuck in your cubicle, you want to maintain your energy at all times!
Now You’ll Love Your Cubicle
Now that you know how to be productive in a small cubicle, you’re ready to get to work!
Focus on organizing your space so that you can reduce clutter. This will help you prioritize your work tasks as well.
Don’t hesitate to decorate your cubicle as you would your home office. If your cubicle is welcoming, you’ll do your best work in it.
Please share this guide with other professionals who are getting started. You can find more great career tips on our website.