23 October 2019/ rent_office_guide

How to Marie Kondo Your Office

A typical person spends an average of 84,171 hours at work over the course of their career. And if you’re spending that many hours in a dull, cluttered office, it’s likely to make you feel uninspired and chaotic too. So, how can you apply queen of clean Marie Kondo’s approach to make sure that your office is sparking joy for you and your team? Here’s our guide to giving your office a Marie Kondo makeover.

What is the KonMari method?

The KonMari method centres around the idea of possessions ‘sparking joy’. It was popularised by Marie Kondo’s bestselling books, ‘The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up’ and ‘Spark Joy’ and focuses on only keeping the possessions that make you feel good to achieve a tidy, happy home. Her approach is rigorous and detailed, covering everything down to folding methods and has won her millions of fans across the globe.

Kondo’s approach focuses on tidying categories, rather than sections of your home. Each section should be completely decluttered before moving onto the next, even if it covers more than one room. Kondo also advises against putting things away before you’ve finished sorting every category. Her approach breaks cleaning into five categories:

  1. Clothes
  2. Books
  3. Papers (documents, old manuals etc)
  4. Komono (Kondo’s name for another other miscellaneous items)
  5. Sentimental items

Rather than focusing on how much you can throw away, Kondo advises thinking about your ‘ideal lifestyle’ and how your declutter can help you achieve this. For example, if you want to feel less stressed, having drawers and racks bulging with endless garments isn’t likely to help. You should focus on keeping only the clothing that makes you happy, which will, in turn, stop your daily fight to shut drawers.

How does it differ from traditional tidying up?

Marie Kondo’s methods promise to help you keep your home and workspace tidy in the long run. By only bringing things into your space that you love, Kondo says that everything becomes more valuable and you realise that mindless clutter serves no positive purpose. Kondo also encourages people to tidy everything in one go, rather than dragging it out over weeks or months and allowing the space to get messy in between bursts of decluttering.

Marie Kondo your office

Though the KonMari method focuses on the home, it can easily be applied to the office. It might be trickier to find items that ‘spark joy’ when you’re faced with a stapler and box files, but you can apply the method to more than just a messy desk.

Kondo’s ‘ideal lifestyle’ approach can also be applied to your desk. When tidying an office space, this means understanding what you want from it – do you need to feel creative and inspired or calm and organised? If items don’t contribute to your productivity or happiness, it’s time to ditch them. Here’s how to approach it.

  • Sort out your drawers and be ruthless with old documents that you no longer need. Don’t underestimate the therapeutic power of a mass recycling or shredding session.
  • Do the same for your emails. Unsubscribe from newsletters that you never actually read and delete old emails that have been addressed. Implement a folder system for your inbox, or work out a more effective one, so that it’s easier to find emails when you need them. If you have the time, you could also comb through your documents and sort them in the same way.
  • Once you’ve sorted the ‘books/papers’ (which could cover all your physical and digital documents), move onto the komono (the general rubbish cluttering up your desk). Return excessive piles of post-it notes to the stationary cupboard, throw out wrappers and old coffee cups and find a tidier home for the things that you do need or love.
  • Finally, tackle the personal items in your workspace. Lots of souvenirs or trinkets will make your desk seem untidy, so limit yourself to just a few. Only keep those that really make you smile and bin the rest (or return them home, if you really can’t bear to part with them).

Screen Shot 2019-10-23 at 15.27.00

Spark joy in your office

Once you’ve got rid of the unnecessary clutter which is making your office feel untidy or boring, focus on the ways that you can ‘spark joy’ in your workplace. Here are five of our top ideas for making your office a lovely place to work.

  • Add colour – White walls and desks will bring plenty of light into your office, but they can make the space feel bare. Colours can also affect the way your team feel - green can supposedly make people feel more creative, while blue is often said to be calming. If you’re not allowed to paint your office, hang pictures or bring in coloured furniture to add a splash of brightness.
  • Get personal – Allow your team to decorate their spaces with items that make them smile, as research has found that barren, ultra-minimalist workplaces can harm workers’ happiness. This could be photos of family and friends, decorative items or a desk tidy to keep pens, paper and other bits. Ask they keep it to just a few items though – desks full of happy clutter definitely don’t spark joy.
  • Bring life to the office – Plants are a great way to boost the mood of your team. One study found that workers are 15% more productive when there are houseplants in the office. Introduce hardy greenery like spider plants, ferns, succulents and aloe vera. They’ll look nice, are easy to maintain and also help you to breathe fresher air by filtering it.
  • Control your cables – Put hooks under desks to keep cables neatly together and away from feet or invest in desks that allow cables to be fed through from underneath to keep leads and plugs out of sight.
  • Turn up the tunes – Research by business networking site LinkedIn found that 90% of workers perform better when listening to music, as it can improve memory, reduce anxiety and increase motivation. Invest in a radio or speaker system for the office and put on a (quiet) feelgood playlist to boost your team’s mood and performance.

You can find wide range of office space for rent on Realla. Using our property portal will help you make a better-informed decision as you can search the entire UK market and stay on top of the latest trends.