SURVEY SAYS: Messy Workstations

We covered a survey that found more than half of senior managers find the most distracting or annoying aspect of employee workspaces to be sloppiness or disorganization.

By Rebecca Moore | May 08, 2017
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Last week, I asked NewsDash readers, “Is your workstation messy, and has anyone ever said anything to you about it?”

Only 16.7% of responding readers said their workstations are messy: however, 27.8% said they are somewhat messy and 18.5% said they are messy sometimes. Thirty-seven percent reported their workstations are not messy.

Asked if their boss or a co-worker made a comment about how their workstation looks, 31.5% of respondents said yes, while 68.5% said no.

I also asked readers if they have seen inappropriate or offensive things in a co-worker’s workstation. More than three-quarters (77.8%) reported they have not, and 22.2% reported they have.

In verbatim comments, some readers said it doesn’t matter if a workstation is messy as long as the employee is productive, but others said a tidy workstation makes workers more productive. Some readers start the day with a clean desk, but it gets messy as work is added, and many others say their workstation is messy because they have so much work to do. A couple of readers indicated that a tidy desk shows a person doesn’t have much work to do. Editor’s Choice goes to the reader who quoted Albert Einstein, “If a cluttered desk is a sign of a cluttered mind, of what, then, is an empty desk a sign?” 

Thanks to all who responded to the survey!