The office can be a dangerous place. Things spill, buttons pop and wounds happen. Rather than having to MacGyver something out of Scotch tape and plastic forks from the office pantry, pick up the items on this list so you’re prepared for anything your workplace throws at you.
You’re a busy person, always on the go, running from meeting to meeting. What happens when all that sweat wipes away your morning antiperspirant? Just reach into your desk and reapply – your coworkers will thank you.
2. Tide Pen
Throughout the day, you eat a lot of clothing-unfriendly foods – chocolate, pasta and coffee immediately come to mind – and at least once between the hours of nine and five, you’re liable to spill something on yourself. Enter the Tide pen, the miracle tool you’ll never be without again.
Just press the pen over the stain, rub the cleaning solution around a bit and wait for it to work its magic. By the time the spot dries, your stain (and sense of panic) will be gone.
3. Sewing Kit
It happens – you pop a button or split a seam and you’ve got a presentation to give in 10 minutes. If you’re prepared, you’ve already bought a cheap sewing kit at the local drugstore and stowed it away in your top desk drawer for such an occasion.
Trust me, $7 now will save you a lot of time and tears later.
4. Hair Brush
This one follows the same logic as the deodorant, especially during winter when you’re always going in and out of places wearing a hat.
5. Lint Roller
You might have pets, or someone’s new “fur” coat is starting to shed at the office. Either way, you need something to get the fuzz off your back and a lint roller in the desk does just the trick. You can find them at most grocery stores for a few dollars from brands like 3M and Smartek.
6. First Aid Kit
Do you really want to be scrambling around the office when you cut your finger on an envelope, or accidentally staple your thumb to a packet of papers (not that that’s ever happened to m- you know what? Let’s move on)?
Your local drug store or pharmacy is sure to have one in the $8-$10 range, complete with bandages, gauze, antibacterial cream, tweezers and everything else necessary to treat those office battle wounds.
7. Eyeglass Kit
We’re not just talking a tiny screw driver and a few spare screws, here. You should always have a magnifying glass, microfiber lens-cleaning cloth and a spray bottle full of lens cleaner, as well.
Always spray the cleaner on the cloth, then wipe the cloth on the glasses. You never spray directly on the lenses themselves. This technique can also be used for computer screens and touchscreen phones.
8. Pocket Notebook
Meetings crop up all the time, either in the office conference room or out at lunch. Don’t panic trying to find something to write on for those occasions, pick up a cheap-o notebook for fifty cents at the corner store, or invest in a set of three Moleskine Cahier notebooks for a more professional note-taking look.
9. Spare Umbrella
You don’t remember rain in today’s forecast, right? Well, it happens and you don’t want to get caught out in the cold without any protection. A compact umbrella that’s easy to store in a desk and/or your bag can save your bacon (and your hair) when the clouds open up. Just remember to put it back in your desk drawer the next day so it’s there when the weather unexpectedly changes again.
10. Twenty Bucks
A ten, a five and five ones should be stowed away in a secret compartment in your desk for emergencies. Maybe you forgot your lunch and you need to grab something nearby – use the ten. Someone’s collecting donations for a ill coworker? Put the five in the jar. Or maybe your stomach’s bothering you and you need a bottle of ginger ale? Grab a few singles and head to the vending machine.
When you’ve used any (or all) of your emergency funds, be sure to replensih them for the next impromptu occasion. In fact, many Moleskine notebooks have special compartments in the back of them to store things like money and index cards – you could check off two items on this list in one shot.