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As I wandered around the office, I couldn’t help noticing how the cubicles reflected the personalities of their occupants. This one was clearly that of a young mother. A chubby boy smiled into the camera in the picture on her pinup board. There were some charts and graphs as well. To monitor some data.

The next cubicle brimmed with knick knacks. A soft doll here, a ribboned poodle there, pictures of different teams- and there were many of them. Christmas was over four months ago but the decorations still held pride of place. There were so many trinkets all over the place that one wondered where the person found the place to do any work.


The cubicle to the right was chaos personified. Did someone say technology has heralded paperless offices? If it had, it must have missed this one on the way. Stacks of papers abounded, reports strewn around, wires running from corner to corner to hook a printer to a precariously balanced computer, sitting on a bank of papers. It would need considerable skills to navigate one’s way from and out of this cubicle!

Another cubicle was pristine clean. One wondered whether it was occupied at all. Every thing was kept at regimented angles. Neatness seemed to be the order of the day. Everything was in its rightful place. One could sense the orderliness in the mind of the occupant.

I am sure in most organisations, people spend most of their day at work. A cheerful work place does help you be more comfortable and relaxed. Professor Meredith Welles of Eastern Kentucky University found that people who were able to personalize their workplace were happier on their job.

Yet there are norms that need to be adhered to. You cannot go overboard to express your individuality. Increasingly, workplaces are shared which lead to issues of “ownership” and decor!

I feel the key words are comfort and convenience. Arrange your material and equipment in a manner with which you are most comfortable. The objective is to have a convenient work layout which helps you perform.

Your workplace relects your personality. Your workplace speaks of you.

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This is the 121 st of the “A Step A Day” series : To provide perspective and provoke thought to facilitate self-development across a wide spectrum of issues- big and small- crucial for executive success