You’ve made it. You’re good at what you do, and your business has the growth and sustainability to prove it. Take a moment to look around your workspace with a critical eye. Does it show the same style and efficiency as your mission statement and financial records? If not, it’s time to make a change. The thought of revamping your workspace may be a little intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be.
Bearing just a few key principles in mind will make it simple for you to upgrade your furniture without breaking stride.
1. Have a plan for your professional workspace.
You’ve been doing your job successfully for a while. How exactly do you like to work? Do you have your best ideas while standing up? Do you like to pace when you’re on a conference call? Do you run out of room on your desk? New office furniture should enhance your existing strengths, not force you to develop a whole new set of work habits. What do you like about your existing furniture? What about it makes you crazy? Jotting down a few notes about your patterns and preferences can save you multiple headaches and speed up your decision making.
2. Think value, not price.
A quick trip to the internet or a local box store will show you the range of discount office furniture available. If budget is a major issue, there are good finds to be had, but you’ll need to be careful. Refer back to your list of preferences and make sure that anything you buy meets your criteria. Saving a few dollars by choosing something you’ll hate is not a bargain. On the flip side, there’s nothing wrong with finding the perfect thing gently-used at a second-hand store or antique shop.
3. Remember your body.
Whether you stand or sit or pace the floor, your working habits take a toll on your body. Make sure your new furniture gives you the support and protection you need, from feet to joints to spine. Ergonomic seating matters. Choose something with good lumbar support and adjustable height and armrests. Click here for a comprehensive list of office chair criteria, and have it at hand while you shop. Think about light. Does your current setup give you eyestrain? Make sure your new seating arrangement has adequate natural or full-spectrum light for the work you do.
4. A desk is a good servant, but a bad master.
Everyone works a little differently. Some folks need lots of open space or client seating, but just enough desk surface to hold a laptop. Others need all the surface space they can squeeze in. Go back to your list—does your current desk meet your needs or does it routinely frustrate you? Make sure your next one aligns with your personal working style, even if it means going beyond the obvious. Try a standing desk, drafting table or library table if it suite you better. Don’t be afraid to add a sliding under-desk keyboard shelf, additional monitor space or book storage if that’s what you need. Click here for additional ideas.
5. Incorporate your brand.
Choosing the furniture for your professional workspace requires a clear aesthetic vision that reflects your organization’s values. Every aspect of your space—from wall art to floor coverings to lighting—creates an important impression. Take your time choosing the pieces you want; be imaginative, even bold, if these qualities are what your customers expect. Click here for some higher-level considerations to bear in mind when furnishing a workspace, whether it be a startup or an expansion.
A business or career in its early stages can feel a bit chaotic; it’s important to notice the milestones that spell success in a professional workspace. A welcoming, functional workspace is a sign that what you’re doing is working. Using the simple principles here, you can upgrade your office to reflect your organization’s values and your personal style—without wasting time or money.