6 Desk Setup Ideas That Maximize Productivity

by | Sep 4, 2020

Everyone’s desk setup is a little different. Some people are total minimalists, while others claim to know where everything is. While your workstation should always be yours to make your own, following great desk setup strategies can also help your productivity grow.

Whether you have a dedicated desk in a coworking space or a dedicated workstation at home, your surroundings impact your efficiency. This includes everything from where your work tools are placed to how far your monitor is from your face.

To help you create a blueprint for your workstation, we asked our founder Jenny Poon to provide some inspiration for your desk setup. We’ll also explain three setup tips you can draw from her example and provide three more ideas you can easily implement.


Jenny’s desk setup


Our founder is a self-proclaimed efficiency nut and if you’ve ever seen her getting sh*t done, you know she’s doing something right. Here’s what she has to say about her desk setup:

“My desk is a super important part of my efficiency process. I make sure I have Post-its and a notepad handy, as I always take notes. I have found having a desk that has drawers has been a godsend for keeping my desk tidy and clean, but with easy access to the necessities.

I have a larger monitor and run off of a laptop, so I can be mobile when I need to, but when designing or working on spreadsheets, I can project up. I found out I could also connect my iPad as an extension to my screen and that has been super helpful, as I just keep my Slack on there so I can always be available via chat for my now-remote team.”


Why her desk setup works


So how does this desk setup boost productivity? Let’s dissect the three main ergonomic strategies that Jenny uses and how you can implement them, too.

1. Most-used items are kept within arm’s reach.

When organizing your desk, your most important tools should always be placed closest to your seat or standing mat. If you love jotting down notes like Jenny, keeping your pen and paper nearby will allow you to grab it in an instant, without shifting away from your primary task.

Bonus points: If you keep these heavily used items in designated spots, you naturally create a physical workflow for yourself.

2. Cleanliness is prioritized.

Even if you know where everything is, a messy desk can hinder your productivity. By keeping least-used items and knick-knacks stored away, Jenny’s desk setup minimizes distractions and allows her to efficiently navigate her workspace.

A clean desk can also feel more inviting, whereas clutter can add to your stress. In addition to investing in drawers (if your desk doesn’t include any), you may consider purchasing basic accessories like cable clips or tiered desk organizers.

3. It’s customized for her work habits.

Everyone works differently, but Jenny is always on-the-go. By using her laptop as a primary device and casting her other tech in purposeful, supporting roles, she can easily unplug, pack up and head to wherever she needs to be.

Alternatively, if you’re typically stationary throughout your workday, you can make a desktop computer the star of the show to avoid switching between devices.


3 more desk setup ideas for productivity


As our founder’s example has shown, the most efficient workstations are always neat and purposeful. Here are some extra desk setup tips that you can implement to drive your productivity further along:

1. Support your natural posture

Keeping an upright posture can enhance your focus, while warding off common health problems for office workers like bad backs and carpal tunnel — which, of course, can cause highly distracting aches and pains. Your desk setup can actually encourage you to sit properly.

To promote good posture:

  • Keep your monitor at eye level. Whether you’re sitting down or using a standing desk, your monitor should help you face forward without a hunched back, and be close enough so you’re not craning your neck.
  • Choose the right chair. An ergonomic chair can encourage you to keep your spine straight and supported. When setting it up, make sure it’s at a level that keeps your feet flat, while allowing you to reach straight for your keyboard without bent wrists.

2. Increase natural light

Natural light is key for greater productivity and better mental health. Positioning your desk close to a window will help you boost your happiness and your focus all at once. Natural light helps you take advantage of your circadian rhythm and stay awake, even without the coffee.

Live in a box? Daylight bulbs that keep you energized are recommended.

3. Choose your decor wisely

While most unnecessary items should be kept off your desk, keeping a small amount of decor can boost your mood while you’re working. Choose a few items that you love, but doesn’t take up a lot of space, such as a family photo.

Small plants are always a good option, as the presence of greenery can lead to 15% more productivity.

Just make sure your decor isn’t in the way when you’re reaching for essential items.


Create your happy place


When you have a great desk setup that’s customized for you, your workspace can be your productive place and your happy place. There aren’t actually any rules when it comes to designing your desk, but when you use our ergonomic strategies, you will feel your efficiency grow.

Want to get ideas rolling for your future workstation? Book a tour of our collaborative coworking space to see your future dedicated desk for yourself.