Remember how getting a new backpack or Trapper Keeper in grade school helped you get excited for going back to school? It’s the same feeling we get when we repaint a room in our home or rearrange furniture — change is invigorating.That concept can also lead to more productivity. Just as a new desk with built-in storage can clear away clutter and help you to focus, improving your workspace can motivate both you and employees to tackle every job with a bit of extra enthusiasm.
Winter can be a great time to devote a weekend to projects around the office you’ve been putting off, while you’re less likely to be outside on the weekends when it’s cold. Putting in some time now to tackle that paint job or floor refinishing you’ve been thinking about will carry over into spring, making it easier and more enjoyable to be indoors at the office even when the weather improves.
A small time commitment can make a big difference in your office atmosphere. Here are five quick and easy projects you can tackle in a weekend:
Buff Your floors. Years of chairs and tables scratching their way across your floor can leave the surface you walk on an ugly mess. Buffing brings back the shine and can open up the room and make it feel new again. Start by mopping the floor to remove dust, before using a rented buffing machine in a concentric pattern around the room, overlapping each band by a few inches (like mowing a lawn). Don’t forget to periodically check your buffing pad and change it if it wears out.
Clean Your carpets. It’s smart to shampoo carpet every year or so, pulling out stains and gunk that the vacuum can’t quite tackle. You’ll also remove any odors hanging on by threads, literally. Vacuum your carpet first, and then use carpet shampoo in a carpet cleaner, thoroughly covering the room. Allow 24 hours for the carpet to dry.
Liven up the walls. A new coat of paint can bring new life to a room. Knock out the project quickly with an airless paint sprayer. Just remove or cover all your furniture along with the floor and windows and get to work. Use paintbrushes for baseboards and trim, and ensure that you choose a paint that works with a paint sprayer and that you have the correct spray tip for the type of paint you’re using.
Redo your entryway. A little tile goes a long way in creating an inviting passage into a room, building, or bathroom. Sketch out your design on graph paper to keep track of your square footage needs; then measure your tile and use a tile saw to cut pro-looking angles and lines.
Spray down your exterior. Although you may want to wait for a weekend that’s not literally freezing outside, pressure washing your building’s exterior is a relatively easy and fun job. For laminate and wood siding, a 2,000 PSI pressure washer is sufficient, but for concrete or metal you’ll want a 3,500 PSI machine.
From sprucing up your floors to adding color to your surroundings, it’s well worth taking a weekend to re-inspire your office space and yourself.
Chris Long is a store associate at a Chicago-area Home Depot. Chris writes tips on renting steam cleaners and a variety of other equipment tools.