Have you given any thought at all about how your desk looks? Few men do. But your desk and how you keep your workspace says loads about you. It is piled high with papers that are over-flowing onto the floor with no sense of organization or structure? Or do you have everything so neat that it looks like you never do any work at all? You can tell a lot about a man and his personality from the way he keeps his desk.
The slovenly computer geek who has four day's worth of old pizza boxes on his desk with a half a case of soda is one of the archetypes. The polished surface leather bound desk with a gold pen and a notepad with nothing written on it is another symbol of the type of the man that owns such a desk. He could be a lawyer, a doctor, a banker, or a fantastic con man. One of the signs of a man's power is having the lack of things on his desk so an empty desk surface is a sign of power, especially if the desk is made of expensive wood and looks like museum piece or that it came from a high priced antique store. If he calls in his secretary to get a file from the credenza that sits right behind him, then you know he knows how to play power.
But what if you are an ordinary Joe with the classic corporate cubicle and you have not achieved the position of having a office with a window, much less a corner office with a secretary to field your calls. What can you do to make your desk work for your improvement as you scrape and claw your way up the corporate ladder? The answer is, that it depends. It depends on who your superior is, who can help you advance your cause, and who is in the way. If you are able to identify the helpers from the blockers then one of the things you can do is match your style to the ones that you think will be most likely to help you. This is a subtle form of ass-kissing and that is why you can get away with it. If your most likely enabler of your climb up the corporate ladder is a family man, he may have photos of his family all over his desk.
If you want to befriend a person like that, you need to do the same. If he likes dogs, put up a photo of a dog even if you don't own one. If asked about it you can always tell him that it died and you will gain more of his trust from his sympathy. If he has photos of his kids on his desk, put photos of you with your kids on your desk also. If you don't have kids, then put a photo of you working with the Boys and Girls Club. If he keeps his desk clean of papers, do the same thing and