London - There’s a saying that a tidy desk means a tidy mind. But it seems the average office worker has failed to take this to heart.
A survey has revealed that we spend spend 35.7 million days a year looking for missing paperwork among the piles of clutter – the equivalent of 1.5 days per worker.
Being untidy doesn’t just waste time – it can cause rows, loss of business and even disciplinary action.
According to researchers, the worst culprits are men over 45 while the neatest are 16 to 24-year-olds.
As the average desk is strewn with mess weighing around a stone (about 6.3kg) in total, it emerges that nearly twice as many men than women have been reprimanded for untidiness – 13.4 percent of male staff but only 6.9 percent of female employees. Almost one in ten have lost a new client, customer or contract as a result of the chaotic state of their desk.
More than 10 percent of workers spend 30 minutes or more every week looking for documents. And one in eight claim to have argued with colleagues about clutter.
Almost half (46 percent) said they could not see the need for a tidy desk. But one in five admitted they had regularly lost important documents. Staff in retail and professional services have been found to be the messiest.
A third blame their clutter on a lack of time, with 20 percent saying that having a PA would help.
Cary Cooper, professor of organisational psychology at Lancaster University, analysed the survey of 1 120 office workers for technology firm Brother.
He said: “It’s astonishing that people are actually losing business as a result of just being disorganised. To deal with the overload, they need to prioritise their workload and better manage their inbox to perform more effectively.
“Keeping a tidy workspace helps to keep a tidy mind, meaning that workers can get on with the job in hand.” - Daily Mail