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User Rank
Engineering Desks
Tim   10/26/2011 9:22:11 PM
Sometimes a messy desk is truly not appreciated or understood.  I worked a place that had a serious 5 S mentality.  It was common to have disciplinary action taken if your desk was not up to the desired standards.  Sometimes people just don't understand.

Brian Fuller
User Rank
Tidy or messy
Brian Fuller   10/26/2011 11:44:54 AM
I couldn't agree more. A messy desk is a sign of genius. I once was asked about this in a job interview, in which the publisher offered a "hypothetical" question about a reporter's messy desk. (His stuff was actually spilling out in the aisle). 

The publisher was a neat freak. I responded that if the piles of notes, press releases and reports didn't impede his ability to break stories, then I was good with it. If people started tripplng over his stuff and hurting themselves, he'd have to tidy up a bit. 


User Rank
williamlweaver   10/26/2011 9:37:33 AM
Sorry, Brian. I must disagree. Wikipedia describes a "desk" as "a furniture form and class of table often used in a work or office setting for reading or writing on or using a computer." Your slideshow is comprised of "Workbenches" - "[a] sturdy table at which manual work is done."

When I look at the "clutter", I see "work in progress" not a mess.  Unless, of course, you are using the Systems Thinking definition that describes a "mess" as a "Complex System of Systems".

If I have hired an engineer and their desk does NOT look like these pictures, then I've made a mistake and hired someone other than an engineer.

K Field
User Rank
Messy Desks
K Field   10/26/2011 8:44:12 AM
To the contrary, I get a little freaked out by people with exceedingly tidy work spaces. I once had a co-worker who I suspected must have used a straightedge to align perfectly a stack of papers on his desktop each night. A little OCD do ya think?

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