Home Office Hustle

What are your top three essential ingredients for a great workspace? I realise that ‘great workspace’ has a pretty buzzword-y feel to it, and you’d be forgiven if you were sitting there silently mocking me right now. I hope you’re not, though, because I am genuinely seeking help in this arena.

I’m putting together a new home office, and for the first time ever I’m planning the space before I start bringing in furniture and so on. In fact, I haven’t even selected the furniture yet. Do I want a standing desk? A textured mat that gives me a trigger point massage while I stand? A seated desk with an ergonomic chair? A floor-cushion situation? Or a combo of all of the above?

I’d like to model it after what I’ve seen (mostly in industry magazines) of commercial office fitouts. Melbourne has some pretty cool stuff going on in this area – different zones for different workplace activities, funky meeting room situations and tidy tech solutions. 

Given that my space is in my house, I arguably already have plenty of such spaces at my disposal. However, not having an external office to go to has forced me, over time, to decisively differentiate my office from my living space. As soon as I step through that door, I’m at work.

Feed me your wisdom, free thinkers of Melbourne. Office designers have always amazed me with their talent. It’s never been my strong suit so I greatly appreciate their work and eye for style. I remember the first time I tried to set up a home workspace at one end of my rectangular dining table, demarcating it from the other end with a line drawn in chalk. I didn’t even use a ruler. 

Needless to say, that was ineffective on a number of levels. In my defence, I was nineteen and had just moved out of home, so points for giving desk space a second thought. Plus, it gave me the impetus to work towards perfecting the arrangement. I’ve now got to a point where I feel like I’m ahead of the pack, but it’s taken a good fifteen years of home office experience to get me there.