African Leadership University

#ALUInternDiary: 5 tips for spicing up your work space

As our internships come to a bittersweet end, for some of us, there might be one little detail that we may never give a second thought to. The organisation of our workspace, as little as it may seem could be what makes our experiences very successful.

As a supply chain intern at Pernod Ricard, the world’s second biggest producer of wine and spirits, I have come to realise the importance of organisation in the workplace. Indeed, understanding this importance means fewer missteps because missteps cost a fortune. For instance, a recent survey gathered from nearly 800 US employees found that the search for lost and misplaced materials – which accounts for nearly 38 hours, or approximately one work week annually, per employee – may have a profound impact on professional perception, productivity and morale. In addition, the survey found that the costs associated for full-time employees looking for misplaced items in the office tops 89 billion dollars annually.

Pernod Ricard’s emphasis on employer development means employees have ample space to grow and discover the sometimes crazy world of work. Supply chain personnel are problem solvers, and to facilitate ground breaking change, breaking the norm is sometimes required and this might mean lots of failed attempts for that one success that could either make you or have you dashed to pieces.

It doesn’t matter whether you work on the field, in an office or on a plane, if your workspace is boring, uninspiring and worse still disorganised, chances are, your mood will start to be the same and this inadvertently slows down your productivity.

Here are five tips on spicing up your workspace so that doesn’t happen:

Get the Green Light

Studies have shown that colour actually has an effect on the way we feel and behave. For instance, the colour green has been shown to help eliminate stress, red can make you feel more detail oriented or hungry. If you think about it, most eateries we visit always seem to spot red in their overall appearance. Think McDonalds, Nandos and Papaye,  Ghanaian fast food chain.

Blue is also shown to boost creativity and would give a sense of calm and serenity during those stressful times.

picture-3Snack Attack

Believe me when I say that your desk will become a human magnet if you have jars of dried fruit and sweets elegantly displayed. This will definitely provide opportunities for you to create rapport with members of staff you may otherwise not have conversations with.

Snacks also serve as brain fuel for those long afternoons. Be rest assured your tummy won’t be growling.


To keep track of all those assigned tasks at work without ripping your hair out, a to-do-list could come in handy. It helps you prioritise your tasks and organise your day more efficiently. I set myself a to-do-list at the start of each week using post-it notes to serve as a reminder of tasks that need immediate attention.


Now we all know how important it is to get organised at the workplace. From the onset we’ve noted that without it, we miss deadlines, miscommunicate, lose information and lose time we would otherwise have used to become the next Bill Gates. Desk organisers can help with this. Paper trays and pen and pencil holders are very useful desk organisers. You can even make your own pen holder like I did in the tutorial below for that personal touch.


Personal Mood Boards

A mini mood board at your desk can help you break down ideas. You can find pictures that match your thoughts on platforms like Pinterest and Instagram. Who knows, starting with a picture might just be the beginning of that stellar idea.


Photo Credit: Abdul-Samed Sadiq, Jameson Brand Ambassador, Pernod Ricard West Africa

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