A referrals officers' response to hot desking
Claire Bourne, a referrals officer in adult social care, has written her wry response to hot desking. It's a kind of eulogy to her old desk, or what she calls My Place.
14th January 2015
At work My Place is my desk, PC and chair. It’s waiting for me each morning. It’s better known in office- speak as my workstation.
But now I must give it up, let it go, sacrifice My Place. We need to save money so they can implement Hot Desking. This is an efficiency measure. I have been informed that possessing a designated desk is too expensive.
So I will soon be Hot Desking. This is like a kind of speed dating with office furniture. I will be taking turns to try out any available empty desk that beckons me, then move cooly onto another one next time.
So what about My Place ? It’s become my match, my perfect fit. A nice woman from Occupational Health came and measured things up to make sure we were compatible. After a few tweaks of my monitor, mouse and chair and became perfectly partnered with this loyal workstation. It responds only to me. I am Queen of that world, mistress of my realm. There, I reside in my black plastic and manmade fibre throne. With the tip of my index finger I turn my PC on and it starts up with its faithful hum of acquiescence.
My Place is the place I am licensed to command. My voice mail proclaims welcome to all who call and my email signature adorns messages to the world with my royal seal. It’s where I can recklessly kick off office shoes. This is my secret zone where no one goes. Beneath the desk I can flex my black stockinged feet and discard wrappers from lovingly eaten sweet treats, hiding a glut of guilty pleasures, everything concealed in the darkness of my own waste paper bin.
At My Place I can swivel at will, and dispense my loose-tongued musings this way and that to a captive audience. I might glide on charioted wheels across carpet, without deeming to use my legs. I pass on to others my pearls of wisdom on last night’s TV. Delivering my speech in full flow.
In my high exalted place on the third floor I possess my very own vista of sky: a square the size a Kleenex pocket tissue. Sometimes my patch of sky is blue with soft cushion clouds, floating sublime and serene.
Bye bye little patch of sky. Bye bye lipstick-stained, Cath Kidston china mug with pink rose design, and deep dark drawer, little desk lamp, perky pink clematis blooms and kingdom of lush ferns. Cherio blue-tacked photos of my favourite people and pets and everything else that makes my desk, the place I feel most comfortable to do my best work.