Managing a small business in an office environment has many important aspects that need to be considered. The most important thing is the health, well-being and productivity of your employees.
By James Garner
Healthy Employees are Happy Employees
If your office is a breeding ground for bacteria and viruses, there’s a good chance that your employees will end up sick. This results in loss of productivity and lost work days. A clean and germ-free work environment ensures that your employees stay healthy and happy.
A clean and organised workspace is also beneficial for your mental health. When your desk and office area are clean and clutter free, it makes you feel good. These feelings of happiness will contribute to better morale, increased productivity, and can even have a contagious effect on your co-workers.
A Tidy Office Relieves Stress
It’s a known fact that lots of clutter all around us adds to feelings of stress. If you have many things on your desk to look at, your brain will try to process them all at the same time, making you lose focus from your work.
Walking into the office in the morning and seeing an unclean, messy desk will raise your stress levels before you even start work. Stress can be the trigger for a number of health problems, including depression, sleep trouble, and fatigue.
Walking into a room that is clean and clear of clutter instantly makes you feel at ease and helps to reduce your stress levels. Don’t forget that first impressions count, so if you have clients visiting your office you want to give the impression of a smart, professional company.
Cleaning Can Be Quick
Now that you know the morale and health benefits of a clean and tidy workspace, you may think that there is no time to keep on top of the cleaning. If your office has not been cleaned for a while and has accumulated a lot of clutter, it may take a little longer to clean the first time. However, regular cleaning of your workspace and office shouldn’t take any longer than 5 – 10 minutes per day, if you follow the advice below.
Office Cleaning Tips
Of course, you could simply hire a cleaning service to come in daily or weekly, depending on how many people use your office. However, for smaller businesses budgets are usually tight and a cleaning service is a luxury that few small businesses can afford.
Maintaining a clean and tidy office yourself is cheaper, and it can take as little as 10 minutes per day if you keep on top of it. Getting your employees or co-workers to join in with the cleaning not only gets it done faster, but provides a welcome morale boost and is a great team working activity.
The following tasks can be done daily, weekly, or anything in-between, depending on how messy your office gets. They should be done when everyone has logged off for the day and is about to go home. For another morale-boosting trick, you could end the working day 10 minutes earlier than usual, and use this time for cleaning.
Clean the Desks
Every employee should be responsible for the cleanliness of their own working space. This means everything that shouldn’t be on the desk should be removed. Dirty mugs, empty water bottles, and scrap paper should all be disposed of at the end of the day. The desk should be wiped down with a cloth, or sanitary wipes.
Use Sanitary Wipes to Clean Surfaces
Sanitary wipes are great for cleaning and disinfecting keyboards, mice, and screens. They can also be used to wipe down other surfaces, such as desktops and filing cabinets. Wipes are much cheaper than expensive cleaning sprays and they can be stored in a drawer. One wipe goes a long way, and it won’t take long to wipe down all your surfaces.
Vacuum the Floor
One of the most important ways to create the impression of a clean and tidy working environment is to keep the floor clean. Nothing says unprofessional and unorganized like a carpet that is full of crumbs and ground in dirt. Even if you only manage to vacuum the floor once per week, it will really make a difference.
Depending on your office setup, you may already have access to a vacuum cleaner. If not, you can buy a decent vacuum cleaner for under $100 if you search about. This really is a great investment as many vacuums are designed to last for years, and the impact on employee health and morale is huge.
There are a few ways to handle the floor cleaning in your office. One way is to create a rota where everyone takes a turn of vacuuming the whole office. Another way is to have every employee vacuum their own floor area, and then have a rota for the communal areas. You may have to try a few different options to see what works best and to keep everyone happy.
Reduce the Mess
There are a few things that can be done to reduce the mess and clutter from accumulating in your office. Keeping on top of the clutter will reduce the time needed for cleaning, and also get your employees into a habit of cleaning as they go.
One of the most effective ways to reduce day to day mess is to avoid eating at your desk. Crumbs get everywhere, from the floor to in between the keys on a keyboard. Create a communal area where employees can relax on their lunch break. This will also encourage them to talk to each other which will boost morale further.
It’s also a good idea to clean as you go in an office environment, this makes it easier and faster to clean at the end of the day. When you are finished your coffee, take the mug through to the kitchen. If you have a pile of paper on your desk that you no longer need, put it in the bin. If there is space, it is also a good idea for every employee to have a waste bin in their work area.
James Garner is a small business owner who loves nothing more than spending time with his family and teaching them the ways of the world. He loves writing about any topic related to home or office life. He currently runs the blog at Clean Home Guide and can be found on Twitter @CleanHomeGuide2.