productivity

10 Things to Do Before Year End – In the Office and at Home


  1. Consult your tax advisor – Tax laws change frequently, so contact your tax advisor to make sure you take advantage of loopholes or rearrange your finances for maximum gain. Looking at your records early can help pinpoint problems that will arise at tax time while you can still resolve them.
  2. Say Thanks – Appreciation doesn’t have to mean cash bonuses or physical gifts, but it does mean you should take the time to reflect on the year’s successes – big and small – and show your appreciation for those that helped make it all happen. This includes your customers, fellow employees, your vendors- anyone who helped you get where you are.
  3. Refresh your space – If that old chair is starting to give you aches and pains or your paint is peeling, consider an office facelift! A new office design and new equipment can increase productivity and make a good impression on both old and new clients.
  4. Clean up your files – Start the year fresh by deleting or shredding old documents or digitizing paper files that take up too much space. Make sure everything is where it should be so that you can better review your progress over the last year.
  5. Set new goals – Not just New Year’s resolutions, but goals you want to achieve in your business and personal life over the next year. You should be able to see what worked over the past year and what didn’t- and you can resolve to try new methods this time.
  6. Year-end contributions – If you’ve had a great year financially, why not give back? Charitable contributions are a good way to reconnect with your community and the tax deductions don’t hurt either.
  7. Renew subscriptions – Magazines? Contracts? Whatever it is, December is a time filled with many bargains and promotions. Take advantage of them by spending wisely on things you will appreciate for the year to come.
  8. Don’t forget about your health – As everyone knows, starting a new year is a great excuse to start a new health regimen. Healthy bodies mean healthy minds and more energy to focus on the important things, so take time to review your exercise and eating habits and resolve to make some better choices.
  9. Reconnect – If you’ve lost touch with friends or associates in the past year, December is a great time to reach out and reconnect. Dust off your contact list and send a greeting to those you’ve drifted away from and delete the contacts you no longer recognize.
  10. Celebrate! – No matter where you are, take the lessons of the old year with you into the new and leave behind the old year’s troubles.  Celebrate with people you care about and support each other in their new endeavors. After all, resolutions are easier to keep when you attempt them together!

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Receive a $25 Target Gift Card when you purchase Avery products

Purchase $75 of qualifying Avery divider office products by December 31st, 2012 and receive a a $25 Target Gift Card by mail. Click here or on the image below to see the eligible products and print the mail-in form.

Benefits of plants in the office and other workplace environments

Perhaps one good cure for the office blues is a little bit of green.

According to Psychology Today, the presence of potted plants has been found to provide many benefits when placed in various environments—including the workplace.  In several experiments, plants have been shown to lower blood pressure, increase attentiveness, improve attendance and raise productivity.  They have also been shown to improve one’s perception of the space they are in, and even improve one’s overall well being.

How about a little green for inspiration?  A study by Texas A&M tested people’s workplace ingenuity in different environments.  The study included a workplace with plants and flowers, one with inanimate objects, and one that was vacant.  The study showed that people were more creative around plants.

In another study conducted in a computer lab at Washington State University, subjects who were performing a slightly stressful computer task had their blood pressure lowered after plants were added to the lab.  They also showed a 12% improvement in reaction time on the computer task.

So if you’re feeling down or bored with your barren work space, head out to a local nursery on your lunch break and pick up an uplifting office plant.  Do you have an office plant story of your own? Share it with us! And to find out more about the many benefits of office plants, visit Green Plants for Green Buildings.