“The world population is currently growing by 74 million people per year – the equivalent of a city the size of San Francisco every three days.”
The workplace is no exception from this growing issue. One way to solve this issue is hot desking. Hot desking is the sharing of desk space in an office usually based on a rotation. Working with non permanent seating is something that I have learnt to deal with over my career. As a consultant onsite we do not always have the luxury of having a permanent desk. Most of the time we have desks but there are moments when we are just armed with laptops and we were placed in a small office room or on a random table in the middle of the hallway. Here are some of the things that I have learnt to help deal with hot desking to make it a positive experience rather than a hinderance
Hot desking works on the concept of a rotation. If there are 5 people on your team, you could have 3-4 desks for your team. The people without desks usually have the option to work from home. Working from home usually requires having a decent Internet connection so that you can do voice over IP calling and to download files from the network. Some workplaces even subsidize this cost if you fit the criteria. Working from home is great because it allows you a good work life balance. You can get your laundry done during the day, have maintenance workers come by without having to take a day off or sign for packages that get delivered. But with great power comes great responsibility, you need to be disciplined. You need self control to prevent yourself from watching YouTube videos and/or surfing Facebook/Twitter all day.
2. Getting organized
Over the years we begin to accumulate things over the years with a permanent desk. Papers, reference books, pens and most of all dust. To be honest I really like the idea of being able to have a picture of your friends/family at work or have pieces of art or posters hanging to personalize the workplace. However with hot desking this is often the first point people realize as something they will lose. Keeping desks tidy creates a welcoming area for the next person to take your seat, nobody likes to walk into a mess. From an information security standpoint keeping desks clear of clutter reduces the risk of sensitive emails that were printed to by lying around for unsuspecting eyes. If this idea of tidy desks is too sterile for your liking, may I suggest having a small picture frame or small pieces of art that can be moved around and stored easily, to give you that little bit of you while you’re at work.
Hot desking is an easy way to meet people who you may have never be in contact with. By moving around we are introduced to new “neighbours” in the office. Personally I have forged some office friendships that kickstarted from a simple “Hello”. Creating connections in the office is a good thing because you may be able to assist one other in a future project or if you find actual common interest you may even make a new friend. Nonetheless, it is great to go into the office and people say “Hi” to you because it makes everything nicer when people know your name.