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(Forbes)   The hidden dangers of messy desks. Yes, your coworkers are judging your competence and effectiveness if your desk looks like a giant pile of papers and coffee cups   (forbes.com) divider line 128
    More: PSA, coffee cups  
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6298 clicks; posted to Main » on 29 Mar 2012 at 2:43 PM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-03-29 03:16:31 PM  

JewZeppy: There's also a thing called "Professionalism" and some people couldn't care less about it.


ftfy
 
2012-03-29 03:17:41 PM  

JewZeppy: There's also a thing called "Professionalism" and some people couldn't are less about it.

People will also judge books by their covers.

So do what you think is best. It'll show.


Shhhh... don't waken the FARK "I'm too brilliant/creative/individual to be oppressed by convention" crowd. They almost massacred me in a thread where I mentioned that I like to wear suits to work even though we have a pretty relaxed dress code.
 
2012-03-29 03:19:08 PM  

pute kisses like a man: JewZeppy: There's also a thing called "Professionalism" and some people couldn't care less about it.

ftfy



I have a messy desk.
 
2012-03-29 03:19:39 PM  

SecretAgentWoman: Also, you need to have a plant or two.

And a Tiki tissue box.

and this,

assets.curbly.com

 
2012-03-29 03:21:18 PM  

Orgasmatron138: JewZeppy: There's also a thing called "Professionalism" and some people couldn't are less about it.

People will also judge books by their covers.

So do what you think is best. It'll show.

Shhhh... don't waken the FARK "I'm too brilliant/creative/individual to be oppressed by convention" crowd. They almost massacred me in a thread where I mentioned that I like to wear suits to work even though we have a pretty relaxed dress code.


Heh. I often wear suits to work when I don't have to, and get comments about it. But then I'm a designer working with a bunch of IT types, so I'm the odd one out anyway.
 
2012-03-29 03:21:29 PM  
This isn't difficult;

Paper everwhere - parallel processor, proactive, adjustable priorities.

Neat piles - Serial processor, reactive, fixed priorities,

You need both types, but you need to know which one you need.
 
2012-03-29 03:24:40 PM  
if my desk is messy it means I'm busy being productive. Suck it.
 
2012-03-29 03:25:05 PM  
If you always have a clutter-free desk then you're not working hard enough.


/my opinion
 
2012-03-29 03:25:39 PM  
Paperwork and other office necessities is one thing. Filth is another.

You don't need empty food wrappers and seven 1/3-full coffee cups (5 of which have been there long enough to start growing mold) on your desk to do your job.
 
2012-03-29 03:27:40 PM  

I'm an excellent driver: This isn't difficult;

Paper everwhere - parallel processor, proactive, adjustable priorities.[needs citation]

Neat piles - Serial processor, reactive, fixed priorities,[needs citation]

You need both types, but you need to know which one you need.


Love to see a source for this.
 
2012-03-29 03:31:12 PM  
I'm actually looking to re-organize my desk and decorate a flat surface so as to not use it to place and forget papers.

Any farkers have any legal, practical yet somewhat elaborate suggestions for utilizing the new space. I'm thinking of building a combination terrarium/ betta or goldfish aquarium with a small pump (from a cat waterdish) and miniature waterfall. I think I can handle the aquarium portion, I'm not so good with the plants, though. It will be ~ 2' x 2', no taller than 12"

The hope is that the health/safety/environment bureaucrats don't make me take it down.
 
2012-03-29 03:31:27 PM  

Smelly Pirate Hooker: Paperwork and other office necessities is one thing. Filth is another.

You don't need empty food wrappers and seven 1/3-full coffee cups (5 of which have been there long enough to start growing mold) on your desk to do your job.


Agreed.

For some reason my company has a single-stream recycling place empty our cubicle trash cans. So we're not allowed to throw away food waste at our desks. It seems to me that this makes it far more likely that disgusting food waste will be sitting around people's space a lot longer, but I don't make those kinds of decisions.
 
2012-03-29 03:31:33 PM  

Orgasmatron138: They almost massacred me in a thread where I mentioned that I like to wear suits to work even though we have a pretty relaxed dress code.


Good. There's something wrong with you. If you worked in my office I'd assume you were a serial killer.

/ you are, aren't you?
// do you own a nail gun?
 
2012-03-29 03:31:35 PM  
For the messy desk crowd:

1. You might have a coworker who is your backup when you're on vacation or busy with another person. Don't you think it might be nice if she could FREAKING FIND what she needs to help YOU.
2. People shouldn't pause when they come up to your desk and wonder where they can put something down without causing a stack to fall.
3. When you call and say "hey can you find this phone number for me, it's on a piece of paper next to my keyboard" it shouldn't be buried down three inches and require figuring out which of 6 stacks you meant.
4. Samples and parts from a project from six months ago shouldn't still be sitting on your desk.

My desk gets messy while I'm working on projects, but when I leave on Friday the papers are filed, the stacks are straightened, and I dust. Unfortunately I share an office with someone I swear is part hamster (and described above). I printed the article out and taped it to his monitor.
 
2012-03-29 03:35:41 PM  
The office of one of my personal heroes:

www.eetimes.com

/RIP Bob
 
2012-03-29 03:36:06 PM  

ISO15693: [2.bp.blogspot.com image 500x271]

[www.cackaloo.com image 272x300]


Thank you for the attribution!
 
2012-03-29 03:36:47 PM  
I'm a physics grad student. I think if my work areas were completely neat, they'd think something was wrong.
 
2012-03-29 03:37:42 PM  

JewZeppy: There's also a thing called "Professionalism" and some people couldn't are less about it.

People will also judge books by their covers.

So do what you think is best. It'll show.


There is also a thing called Anal Retentive Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.

People will also judge books based on if they have an even number of pages in them.

So let your mental condition cloud your judgement. It'll show.
 
2012-03-29 03:37:45 PM  

Sock Ruh Tease: If a cluttered desk signs a cluttered mind, of what, then, is an empty desk a sign?

- Albert Einsign


DOH
 
2012-03-29 03:38:15 PM  
True story time. I once worked with a rather prolific biologist. His office was a freaking fire hazard. It was literally stacked from floor to ceiling with books, folders stacks of papers, etc. One day I went to him because he had written an paper some 20 years earlier and I was hoping he'd have a copy, so that I wouldn't have to order it. I asked him and he immediately went to one of the stacks and pulled a copy out from the center of it. I was amazed not only that he remembered the article in question (he had written some 600 articles and eight books), but that he knew exactly where it was in his near-landfill of an office. I asked him if he knew the exact location of everything in his office and he simply responded "yes."
 
2012-03-29 03:38:31 PM  
Worked with a guy once who would eat his lunch at his desk.....actually caught him licking his plate clean like a farkin cat one time. I could deal with all that except for the fact that he kept the dirty dishes in his cube for weeks. WEEKS! One time I had to sit in his other chair to go over some things and I saw ants walking around. Farkin Ants! WTH? How the hell does a person not care about ants walking around on their desk?? Was very happy the day he left...
 
2012-03-29 03:40:18 PM  

btraz70: Worked with a guy once who would eat his lunch at his desk.....actually caught him licking his plate clean like a farkin cat one time. I could deal with all that except for the fact that he kept the dirty dishes in his cube for weeks. WEEKS! One time I had to sit in his other chair to go over some things and I saw ants walking around. Farkin Ants! WTH? How the hell does a person not care about ants walking around on their desk?? Was very happy the day he left...


I would have gone screaming to HR. But then I have a deep-seated loathing of ants thanks to being attacked by fire ants as a small child. I can't even look at the farkers without itching and wanting to napalm the area.
 
2012-03-29 03:43:51 PM  
Hey, all of the anti-socials on Fark would rather tell everyone else to "deal with it", and "it shouldn't matter" rather than trying to improve how they are precieved in other's minds.

Color me shocked!!!

/Semi-messy desk usually, with occasional days of being orderly.
 
2012-03-29 03:44:49 PM  

btraz70: Worked with a guy once who would eat his lunch at his desk.....actually caught him licking his plate clean like a farkin cat one time. I could deal with all that except for the fact that he kept the dirty dishes in his cube for weeks. WEEKS! One time I had to sit in his other chair to go over some things and I saw ants walking around. Farkin Ants! WTH? How the hell does a person not care about ants walking around on their desk?? Was very happy the day he left...


Bring in some chickens and they'll deal with the ants. Problem solved.
 
2012-03-29 03:46:55 PM  

Splinshints: Orgasmatron138: They almost massacred me in a thread where I mentioned that I like to wear suits to work even though we have a pretty relaxed dress code.

Good. There's something wrong with you. If you worked in my office I'd assume you were a serial killer.

/ you are, aren't you?
// do you own a nail gun?


Sorry, I meant to reply, but I had to return some videotapes.
 
2012-03-29 03:47:45 PM  

JesseL: btraz70: Worked with a guy once who would eat his lunch at his desk.....actually caught him licking his plate clean like a farkin cat one time. I could deal with all that except for the fact that he kept the dirty dishes in his cube for weeks. WEEKS! One time I had to sit in his other chair to go over some things and I saw ants walking around. Farkin Ants! WTH? How the hell does a person not care about ants walking around on their desk?? Was very happy the day he left...

Bring in some chickens and they'll deal with the ants. Problem solved.


...until the chickens become a nuisance. But that's why we have coyotes, now, isn't it?
 
2012-03-29 03:47:58 PM  

That coward David Lopan: Hey, all of the anti-socials on Fark would rather tell everyone else to "deal with it", and "it shouldn't matter" rather than trying to improve how they are precieved in other's minds.


They are trying to improve how they're perceived in other people's minds, in the most efficient and direct way.

What are you going to do when one coworker will give you a hard time for a messy desk, and another will complain that a clean desk obviously means you're not doing anything? The problem lies entirely in their perceptions, ergo their perceptions are what needs fixing.
 
2012-03-29 03:50:00 PM  

Nana's Vibrator: JesseL: btraz70: Worked with a guy once who would eat his lunch at his desk.....actually caught him licking his plate clean like a farkin cat one time. I could deal with all that except for the fact that he kept the dirty dishes in his cube for weeks. WEEKS! One time I had to sit in his other chair to go over some things and I saw ants walking around. Farkin Ants! WTH? How the hell does a person not care about ants walking around on their desk?? Was very happy the day he left...

Bring in some chickens and they'll deal with the ants. Problem solved.

...until the chickens become a nuisance. But that's why we have coyotes, now, isn't it?


Bingo. Then the only thing left to deal with is how to keep the coyotes from hybridizing with HR.
 
2012-03-29 03:51:45 PM  

LaraAmber: btraz70: Worked with a guy once who would eat his lunch at his desk.....actually caught him licking his plate clean like a farkin cat one time. I could deal with all that except for the fact that he kept the dirty dishes in his cube for weeks. WEEKS! One time I had to sit in his other chair to go over some things and I saw ants walking around. Farkin Ants! WTH? How the hell does a person not care about ants walking around on their desk?? Was very happy the day he left...

I would have gone screaming to HR. But then I have a deep-seated loathing of ants thanks to being attacked by fire ants as a small child. I can't even look at the farkers without itching and wanting to napalm the area.


Ah, I've worked with entomophobics before.

A large bag of plastic novelty bugs goes a really, really long way. A little bit of nail polish makes them shinier and a bit more realistic. Sometimes you have to work the subliminal angle as well. Hide a piece of rotten food somewhere in their office, so something always seems a little "off"... somehow it increases the visceral reaction to creatively-placed fake bugs.

In fact, if you hide the rotten food well enough, and have patience - you won't even need the fake bugs.
 
2012-03-29 03:54:15 PM  

elev8meL8r: LaraAmber: btraz70: Worked with a guy once who would eat his lunch at his desk.....actually caught him licking his plate clean like a farkin cat one time. I could deal with all that except for the fact that he kept the dirty dishes in his cube for weeks. WEEKS! One time I had to sit in his other chair to go over some things and I saw ants walking around. Farkin Ants! WTH? How the hell does a person not care about ants walking around on their desk?? Was very happy the day he left...

I would have gone screaming to HR. But then I have a deep-seated loathing of ants thanks to being attacked by fire ants as a small child. I can't even look at the farkers without itching and wanting to napalm the area.

Ah, I've worked with entomophobics before.

A large bag of plastic novelty bugs goes a really, really long way. A little bit of nail polish makes them shinier and a bit more realistic. Sometimes you have to work the subliminal angle as well. Hide a piece of rotten food somewhere in their office, so something always seems a little "off"... somehow it increases the visceral reaction to creatively-placed fake bugs.

In fact, if you hide the rotten food well enough, and have patience - you won't even need the fake bugs.


You do realize I have a gun, right?
 
2012-03-29 03:55:24 PM  

StopLurkListen: If your method of organization is foot-deep horizontal stratified layers and you can find your stuff when you need it,


It depends on if other people need to be able to find stuff when you aren't around. If nobody else needs to touch your stuff until you are done and hand it off, do what you want. If other people in your office are going to need to get stuff from your desk when you are on vacation, your system of organizing by smell probably isn't going to fly.
 
2012-03-29 03:55:31 PM  
My coworkers can suck it.
 
2012-03-29 03:58:29 PM  
Meh, say waht you want about nosey co-workers, etc. the article has a very good point. When I came to this job the FIRST thing that I did was to create and implement a filing system. Prior to that, they would just throw all of the completed work into a gigantic pile on of papers that covered two desks in the back of the office. They were so used to clutter and disorganization that they didn't really even realize how it was effecting their productivity. For example, instead of looking for a file they would just contact another department for a copy of whatever they needed.

We run like a well-oiled machine now and the biggest reason for that is there is now a place for everything and everyone knows where things should go.
 
2012-03-29 03:59:48 PM  

JesseL: Nana's Vibrator: JesseL: btraz70: Worked with a guy once who would eat his lunch at his desk.....actually caught him licking his plate clean like a farkin cat one time. I could deal with all that except for the fact that he kept the dirty dishes in his cube for weeks. WEEKS! One time I had to sit in his other chair to go over some things and I saw ants walking around. Farkin Ants! WTH? How the hell does a person not care about ants walking around on their desk?? Was very happy the day he left...

Bring in some chickens and they'll deal with the ants. Problem solved.

...until the chickens become a nuisance. But that's why we have coyotes, now, isn't it?

Bingo. Then the only thing left to deal with is how to keep the coyotes from hybridizing with HR.


I can tell you how not to deal with it, and then you'll understand why I'm never allowed in Rhode Island again. When they tell you things like you shouldn't refer the the women in HR as "dogs" or "foxes" and "Don't bring chicken wire and a shotgun to work" and "Maybe you should put on some pants", apparently it's best if you just listen and do what you're told.
Stupid chickens.
 
2012-03-29 04:00:02 PM  
In every office I've ever worked, whenever i see someone with a really messy desk, I think to myself that that person has purposely constructed their work environment like that in order to create the illusion of being busy or being a hard worker. I've been proven correct about 85% of the time.
 
2012-03-29 04:04:14 PM  
fark, i am disappoint

dereksemmler.com
 
2012-03-29 04:07:16 PM  

JesseL: That coward David Lopan: Hey, all of the anti-socials on Fark would rather tell everyone else to "deal with it", and "it shouldn't matter" rather than trying to improve how they are precieved in other's minds.

They are trying to improve how they're perceived in other people's minds, in the most efficient and direct way.

What are you going to do when one coworker will give you a hard time for a messy desk, and another will complain that a clean desk obviously means you're not doing anything? The problem lies entirely in their perceptions, ergo their perceptions are what needs fixing.


Oh, I see you're point and I'm sure everyone else has an equally well thought out resson for not giving into these misconceptions.

Moonfisher: My coworkers can suck it.


Or not.
 
2012-03-29 04:07:33 PM  

moops: fark, i am disappoint

[dereksemmler.com image 300x216]


That's not fair, the clutter wasn't his fault.
 
2012-03-29 04:09:32 PM  

JesseL: The office of one of my personal heroes:

[www.eetimes.com image 640x916]

/RIP Bob


Came here to insert reference to Bob Pease's office. Leaves knowing that it has been taken care of.
 
2012-03-29 04:14:26 PM  
When I have to share a desk, I keep things looking neat and orderly, using a specific filing system that we all share for group projects.

When I don't share a desk, it's easier to give me a call and ask where something is than to try to find it yourself. Just because it doesn't look organized, doesn't mean I don't know where it is.

/I don't keep trash like food though, that's just nasty.
 
2012-03-29 04:16:29 PM  
Moonfisher: My coworkers can suck it.

A couple of mine really can, too.
 
2012-03-29 04:17:05 PM  
You're either the type of person who looks at a messy desk and thinks ' I do not like this. I somehow have a right to force that person to change their habits. ' or ' Boy that is a messy desk, they must be busy. Either way, I have no right to force them to change their habits unless they affect me directly.'
 
2012-03-29 04:18:05 PM  
Cleaning your desk is what the friday afternoon before xmas break is for. I always assumed people who clean their desks often have compulsive disorders.
 
2012-03-29 04:18:39 PM  
I'm messy, but not dirty. At work and home. By that I mean there is always stuff laying around, but not nasty, degrading, old food or anything. At home, I finally gave up and have a cleaning crew come once a week. It's awesome, yet somehow in one week it needs it again. At work, I just have piles of paper laying around my desk. My brain is my filing system, and it's rather effective.
 
2012-03-29 04:21:04 PM  

LaraAmber: btraz70: Worked with a guy once who would eat his lunch at his desk.....actually caught him licking his plate clean like a farkin cat one time. I could deal with all that except for the fact that he kept the dirty dishes in his cube for weeks. WEEKS! One time I had to sit in his other chair to go over some things and I saw ants walking around. Farkin Ants! WTH? How the hell does a person not care about ants walking around on their desk?? Was very happy the day he left...

I would have gone screaming to HR. But then I have a deep-seated loathing of ants thanks to being attacked by fire ants as a small child. I can't even look at the farkers without itching and wanting to napalm the area.


You are pathetic.
 
2012-03-29 04:21:29 PM  

Barricaded Gunman: Moonfisher: My coworkers can suck it.

A couple of mine really can, too.


You know this from experience or are you just hoping to get them drunk enough?
 
2012-03-29 04:22:50 PM  
Messy shmessy. Clean a fish at your desk and you'll probably get a promotion.
 
2012-03-29 04:32:24 PM  

LaraAmber: Barricaded Gunman: Moonfisher: My coworkers can suck it.

A couple of mine really can, too.

You know this from experience or are you just hoping to get them drunk enough?


No, that only works on you.
 
2012-03-29 04:32:25 PM  

Mr. Robo-Pants: JewZeppy: There's also a thing called "Professionalism" and some people couldn't are less about it.

People will also judge books by their covers.

So do what you think is best. It'll show.

There is also a thing called Anal Retentive Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.

People will also judge books based on if they have an even number of pages in them.

So let your mental condition cloud your judgement. It'll show.



I landed a big one.
 
2012-03-29 04:54:01 PM  

Digital Communist: Cleaning your desk is what the friday afternoon before xmas break is for. I always assumed people who clean their desks often have compulsive disorders.


and then some. one i'm married to is called "Anal Annie" by co-workers. to some people things that are meaningless mean a lot. she cares greatly about what others think. it's so sad.

/she's not anal in the good way
 
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