Every small business owner has a secret weapon for keeping her productive and on the top of her game. We wanted to find out what keeps our small business experts productive, so we asked them what the most important part of their workspace is. Here’s what they had to say…
1. “The most important part of my office is my couch, where clients sit and are able to open up about their struggles in a safe and nonjudgmental space. I’m a therapist in private practice in Rockville, MD, with a speciality in helping people struggling with eating disorders and body-image issues. Some really important and impactful conversations happen in this room.” –Jennifer Rollin, Jenniferrollin.com
2. “Our beer garden. This is, in actual fact, our boardroom. We are a small team, and promoting positivity is key for us. For this reason, we like having somewhere that promotes creativity and diversity while we are brainstorming our creative campaigns and having morning meetings. The fake grass, colourful bookshelves and quirky objet d’art (Star Wars action figures, funny quotes, vintage mobile phones) reflect our tech geek reputation and help to eliminate the corporate feel that we fight against in our office.” –James Nuttall, It Works
3. “An important part of my office is my favorite piece of art – a framed pair of pink heart-shaped sunglasses. The glasses were a gift from an employee who claimed I always saw the best in both clients and staff; thus, she gave me a pair of rose-colored glasses to further enhance my rose-colored view. I hung these in my office to remind myself how much it means when people are valued, and how much harder they can push themselves when someone sees them for who they can be and not past errors. My clients are teenagers and my school, Brightmont Academy, provides customized one-to-one instruction, so it is especially exciting to watch these high school students complete diplomas, earn a high grade in a challenging class, enter college early, and so many other positive results. Whether or not I wear these glasses, I do see success at every Brightmont campus!” –Ruth Wilson, Brightmont Academy
4. “Vincent Zurzolo has a comic book art gallery in his Manhattan office. He is a buyer and seller of high end comic books and his love of comic art extends to this hallway gallery. It is open for the public to view during working hours at no cost.” –Vincent Zurzolo, metropoliscomics.com
5. “The most important parts of my work space: Every morning and at the end of every day I fill in John Lee Dumas’ Freedom journal. It keeps me on track for what I am going to do for the day, what I am grateful for and it tracks the wins and also what I struggled with (and solutions for the struggles).
I also make time to meditate every day using Muse. It connects to my phone and forces me to not think and just relax. I typically use it before my work day ends and it really helps me disconnect from work so I can focus on family after work hours.” –Carrie Wood, Lease Ref
6. “Each day our Chef Scott and Sous Chef Spencer prepare breakfast and lunch in Talent Plus’ Taste of Talent using closely and locally sourced products – preparing everything from scratch. Talent Plus subsidizes food for associates. One of our associates says, No one is eating a better lunch in Lincoln, Nebraska, than Talent Plus associates each day.” –Cydney Koukol, Talent Plus, Inc.
7. “My favorite thing at my office is my dual monitor. I have no idea how I worked without it! After about a week of working with it, I had to get one at home too. It’s so much easier to do work each day with it. Everyone should have this set up! Where have you been all my life!” –Glenn Sinish, Best Price Nutrition
8. “We are an animation studio, and a lot of the videos we make are whiteboard animations. Sometimes our whiteboards look like other company’s whiteboards, with line items and bullets and flow-charts. Other times they carry rough versions of the animated videos we will make. And still other times they carry the jottings of artists being artists.” –William Gadea, IdeaRocket LLC
9. “I absolutely love our company. One of the things I love the most is the view. We are a small family owned business in Crown Point, Indiana around the courthouse square. When I get stressed or have a rough day, I enjoy looking out the window from my office. Makes me feel a lot better.” –Jeff Moriarty, MothersFamilyRings.com
10. “The most important part of my office is the computer, of course!” –Dustin Montgomery, Moving Blankets USA
11. “My unique desk. I use it as both a stand-up and sit-down desk. I vary positions throughout the day and it seems to work great for long days.” –Bradley Shaw, SEO Expert Brad Inc.
12. “The most important part of our office is our charity boutique. Our organization helps disadvantaged women reentering the workforce by providing them with work-appropriate clothing, shoes and accessories, as well as resume help, interview prep, and a variety of personal and professional development workshops – all free of charge.
The boutique is the first part of the appointment for our clients, where they work one-on-one with one of our volunteers and get to pick out an outfit for their job interview – and it’s an outfit that could quite literally help change their life. Once they get the job, they get to come back, ring a bell at our front desk (where everyone stops and claps for them), and then pick out more outfits for their new job. The outfits are just one of the services we provide, but the boutique is definitely the heart of our office.” –Alison Zaccone, Bottomless Closet