What your Office Desk Décor Says about You

When you step into someone’s home for the first time, you get a sense of who they are as a person. The books they have on their shelves, the art on their walls –décor is just as much about personal expression as it is about arranging all your mod cons under one roof.

So now that modern workers spend more time at work (commonly in an office environment) than they do at home, it comes as no surprise that many will chose to keep some personal items on their desk, to make the place feel more like home, to remind them of their family or proudest achievements etc..

This post will look at some common methods of office desk or cubicle decoration and offer some light-hearted insight on what these décor choices say about you. 

The Seasonal Switcher 

Santa's Office

Photo by: Ruth and Dave

Typically, a Seasonal Switcher is a very outgoing personality who loves going to work socials and being the centre of attention. Come 1st November, this person will be overwhelmed with excitement for the holidays and will be boasting to everyone else in the office about how they’ve already started Christmas shopping. Their desk may start off with just an advent calendar and a mini tree, but by December, their entire office area (including the desks surrounding them) will become awash with blinking fairy lights and tinsel.

Seasonal Switchers will also go all-out with decorations for Halloween, Easter, Valentine’s Day- every public holiday going, they’re really not fussy. It’s probably best to let them just get on with covering your desk area with fake snow; no one likes a killjoy. Just try to avoid walking under their strategically-placed mistletoe, to be on the safe side.


The Family Fanatic 

Office Decor

Photo by: quinn.anya

People who choose to decorate their desk with family photos are clearly sensitive souls, who need to remind themselves that the reason they choose to sit in the same spot, day after day, doing the same monotonous tasks over and over is… to provide for their loved ones!

Sometimes this office personality will feel the stress of being pulled in all directions –at home and at work – and they may often be very tired (especially if they have younger children at home). So to get on with the Family Fanatic, try talking to them in your calmest, indoor voice and ask them some questions about their cute kids- you’ll be in their good books in no time.


The Post-it Bandit 

Office Decor

Photo By: mtkopne

The Post-it Bandit will be getting through post it notes like they’re going out of fashion. But don’t be fooled by the neat arrangement of ‘to-dos’ on their cubicle walls–these merely give off the illusion of organisation.

In reality, Post-it Bandits are a mess of anxieties and believe that those little pieces of paper with sticky on the back are the only things that can save them from the horror of missing a deadline, forgetting to pick up their dry cleaning and the million and nine other things they have to do today.

The very worst thing you can do to this kind of office decorator is to clear their post-its away for them, or ignore one of their passive-aggressive notes, which always start off with the same line, ‘Hi Guys, sorry for the note but…(insert highly irritating and hypocritical complaint here)’.

To get along with this type of person, it’s probably best to just do as they say, stay out of their way and thank the heavens for your superior memory and verbal communication skills.


The Kooky Collector 

Office Decor

Photo By: Joshua Smith

“What’s your favourite animal? Everyone’s got one. I like ducks, I think ducks are great. They’ve got this charming, almost cocky, air about them. The way they swim right up to you and take your bread. I love them; I wish I was a duck.”

This is a recreation of the first conversation you will have with the office ‘Kooky Collector’ type. When you first walk up to their desk, you will notice their obsession and will do everything in your power to avoid bringing up the subject in conversation – but of course, your efforts will be in vain. The Kooky Collector has been waiting for months for some fresh ears to bore numb and you’ve just become their prime target.

It can be very tempting to scream at them, ‘SHUT UP ABOUT BLIMMIN’ DUCKS WILL YOU?!’ But don’t miss a trick here, the Kooky Collector types tend to wear their heart on their sleeve and you’ve just discovered their weakness, which is now yours to exploit mercilessly. The next time the Kooky Collector chases you for a late assignment for example, don’t fret. Just send them a jpg of Donald Duck saying, ‘Sowwie!’ and you should be golden for at least a week.


So there you have it, a light-hearted look at some common office decorator archetypes. Don’t worry if you fall into one of the above stereotypes, your office space is your place to shine and show your co-workers your real personality, which of course some people will love and others well…won’t like it so much.

Remember that your office furniture and work station is your home away from home, so just make sure that it’s a comfortable environment for you.