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Setting up Your New Office for Success

Whether you are setting up a new business or moving an existing one, chances are you will be setting up your office with an entirely new set of furnishings. New offices will require a bit of pre-planning and you want to ensure that you set your office up with productivity in mind. Here are some components of an office space that you should never overlook.

The Right Furniture Makes the Difference

It goes without saying that the right furniture is important. You want to make sure that you and your employees are comfortable and have enough working space. Otherwise productivity will suffer because it is hard to work without an adequate amount of space as well as when you are not comfortable. Choosing the right furniture includes:

  • Sturdy Desks – the desks you choose for your employees should be sturdy and durable. It is a waste of money to throw out furniture every couple of months or years simply because it is no longer reliable. Spending the money up front and buying reliable, durable furniture will pay off in the long run as your desks will likely last you 10 years or more.
  • Comfortable Chairs – Because most office work is done sitting down, you want to make sure that the chairs you have are comfortable. They should have ergonomic function, as well as good lumbar support. Chairs come in a wide variety of sizes and with many features and can be found in many locations that sell industrial supplies.
  • Conference Tables – Regardless of the type of business you have, having a conference table is always recommended. It ensures that you have a space to speak with clients, as well as employees when you have meetings. Conference tables come in many different sizes, allowing you to pick the right one to fit the space you have available.

Organisation is Key

You cannot run a business without the necessary organisational tools. Success requires being organised and being able to find the supplies you need in an instant. Spending minutes or hours looking for something that should have been strategically placed can hamper valuable business time. Here are some must-have organisational tools that you should have in your office.

  • Filing Cabinets – all businesses revolve around paperwork and it is important to have a place to store your important business papers. Filing cabinets use hanging folders as a way of keeping your paperwork sorted by the different aspects of your business. For example, you want to store employee information separately from client files and invoices. Invest in hanging files as well as regular file folders and keeping a maintained filing system should be relatively simple.
  • Storage Cabinets – Regardless of how big or small your office space is, you may find that you need to invest in a storage cabinet. Storage cabinets are like pantries, of sorts, but with the intention of storing necessary business supplies. These supplies include printing paper, pencils, pens, folders, notepads and other necessary industrial supplies.
  • Shelving – having shelves is a no-brainer. You can use them to store your books, sort out work that needs to be done as well as forms or other paperwork that is regularly used in your office. You can find shelving systems in an industrial supply store and they are available in many sizes and colours. You can choose from corner units for space saving capabilities as well as wall units.

Having your office set up correctly from the beginning will ensure that you have all of the keys to succeed. Because organisation and preparation are two main components of success, you do not want to sacrifice either of them. Visiting your local industry supplies store will turn up a variety of solutions, but do not go overboard. Buy only what you need and what you will use, otherwise you are essentially wasting money.

Having the right office industrial supplies on hand can make your business run smoother. When it comes to maintaining a reputation, you want to start out on the right foot.

 

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Identifying and Conquering ‘Groupthink’

How many times have you sat in a meeting, wondering if you should mention a potential problem with a plan or a more efficient method—but didn’t? How many times have you requested input or ideas from your team or department, only to be met with averted eyes and resounding silence? How many times have you gone along with the crowd because you didn’t want to seem different? You just engaged in or encountered ‘groupthink.’

The term ‘groupthink’ was coined in 1972 by Irving Janis, and everyone has engaged in, been affected by or has seen ‘groupthink’ in action. It identifies the mass or pack mentality through which individuals, often with dissenting opinion or contradictory knowledge, hold their dissension to themselves out of fear—fear of bucking trend, being labeled a non-team-player or being tagged as an anarchist or simply “different.” In a nutshell, engaging in groupthink is equivalent to ‘going along to get along.’ Sometimes, however, shunning ‘groupthink’ is the wiser and more responsible action to take.

Groupthink does not mean the collaborative effort involved in a group of individuals thinking about the same thing. There is real benefit from individuals gathering to pick each other’s brains for ideas. Groupthink is based on our need to belong, to bond and be a member of a pack. People who groupthink aren’t necessarily lemmings either, following without thought and whose instincts are only to follow the pack. A ‘groupthinker’ is someone who doesn’t offer independent view, who goes along with the crowd despite contrary feelings or impulses. Their need to belong is greater than the need to dissent, and that isn’t always a good thing.

One of the best but least-known examples of groupthink revolves around the space shuttle, Challenger, on January 28, 1986. The short-lived flight was historic in several ways: It was the first space flight to include members who were not trained astronauts; it included the first women in space; it was the shortest manned flight in aerospace history, and it killed every member on board.

Engineers knew of design flaws but said nothing until well after the explosion. That groupthink attitude cost people their lives, and those engineers ‘went along with the crowd’ when they should have made their concerns over the design flaw known.

Children drinking, smoking, ‘doing drugs’ and having sex because all their friends are can be examples of groupthink in action. Kids often do know better, but they don’t want to be “different” from their peers, so they engage in activity they know is wrong, simply to bond with others—to be included in a group. These groupthink actions differ from the same actions deliberately taken out of spite, defiance or rebellion.

What differentiates groupthink from other compliance psychologies are the underlying motives and the silent knowledge of wrongness. Silence in groupthink can be capitulation—the lack of a strong sense of independence and giving in to pack instinct dominance.

The other thing groupthink is not is good. It always has a negative aspect, whether it affects goal outcome, reduces self-respect or compromises morals or ethics. You might voice your differing opinion or present contradictory information and still be directed to comply: That’s not groupthink. There is no silence involved. Whether you comply with that directive or engage in the activity depends on the exact situation and morality or ethical guidelines.

Conquer groupthink: Maintain a healthy self-respect; adhere to your higher thought processes, moral and ethical compasses, and never be afraid to speak when it counts.

Article written by Sara Woods, a writer for Coupon Croc, the best resource for discount codes to save on all of your online purchases.

 

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There are things you just shouldn’t try to do yourself

Hire an architect – by Seth Godin

Architects don’t manufacture nails, assemble windows or chop down trees. Instead, they take existing components and assemble them in interesting and important ways.

It used to be that if you wanted to build an organization, you had to be prepared to do a lot of manufacturing and assembly–of something. My first internet company had 60 or 70 people at its peak… and today, you could run the same organization with six people. The rest? They were busy building an infrastructure that now exists. Restaurants used to be built by chefs. Now, more than ever, they’re built by impresarios who know how to tie together real estate, promotion, service and chefs into a package that consumers want to buy. The difficult part isn’t installing the stove, the difficult (and scarce) part is telling a story.

I’m talking about intentionally building a structure and a strategy and a position, not focusing your energy on the mechanics, because mechanics alone are insufficient. Just as you can’t build a class A office building with nothing but a skilled carpenter, you can’t build a business for the ages that merely puts widgets into boxes.

My friend Jerry calls these people corporate chiropractors. They don’t do surgery, they realign and recognize what’s out of place.

Organizational architects know how to find suppliers, use the cloud (of people, of data, of resources), identify freelancers, tie together disparate resources and weave them into a business that scales. You either need to become one or hire one.

The organizations that matter are busy being run by people who figure out what to do next.

 

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