Archive for February, 2014

New Office Trend – The Standing Desk

There’s been a lot of talk about standing desks, both for health and productivity reasons. Because of this, I have done a little research. Those with back issues or those in the wellness field looking for a healthier or less painful alternative to chair time seem to be the trendsetters here.

The majority of these desks are adjustable, in that they can be raised or lowered throughout the day, depending on your preference to stand or sit. When you raise one of these desks, they recommend pulling the desk to your elbow height and then adjusting, getting a feel for what is comfortable for you. It may require you to drop it a couple of inches at most.

There are many differing opinions on the actual benefits. Those with back issues are relieved to be standing as part of their day because sitting for any period is often unbearable. Those that have a history of using the standing desk recommend not standing still, but moving throughout your workday even if that is simply re-balancing yourself at the desk as you work. A stiff standing body does not do much for better health. Maybe that is how the tread desk came about. Yes, you guessed it, the cousin version to the standing desk, which incorporates a treadmill! They claim it’s a slow and steady type treadmill yet it sounds like too much coordination to me. Rub my tummy and pat my head? Not this girl!

The cost of these types of desks can run $500 and up so a little high for most budgets. Consequently, in my research I saw many “homemade” versions (a cut down desk on top of another desk), but the DIY creators were the first to admit that making it yourself is not the way to go. The desk ends up big and chunky and it’s difficult to get the correct height because DIY desks are not typically adjustable. These DIY folks also often work with a second desk for sitting.

Personally, I have to admit, I do sometimes work while standing up and I feel like it puts more urgency behind my work. I don’t have the standing desk, but there is still office activity I can get done while standing or shuffling around my office. I don’t have a bad back, nor am I overly concerned with my health, but for me, standing makes things happen faster.

In my time management education I have often heard about stand-up meetings. They are recommended to move meetings along, keep them timely and cover topics more succinctly. In my numerous management years I did not hold stand-up meetings as I was overly concerned with my staff feeling comfortable (with their coffee and donut in hand). Would I consider stand up meetings today? For some meetings I would say absolutely!

For more detailed looks at the desks described, here are some links I discovered.