At the height of the Victorian Era, a ship was decommissioned and scrapped. This ship was the HMS Resolute, an English ship that a few years earlier had been abandoned at sea, found by an American whaler, overhauled by the American government, and presented back to the British government. In 1880, Queen Victoria returned the favor. She presented the then President of the United States, Rutherford B. Hayes, with a desk created from the scraps of the Resolute. The Resolute desk is still the desk of the most powerful leader in the western world and stands as a symbol of that power.
One can imagine that many desks in the past followed a similar trend. I could imagine a banker or lawyer going to a nearby carpenter to discuss the best local woods in which to make a desk. For the rural farmer, I could imagine his cutting down a tree that had been growing on his land for several generations and honing it into a workbench or table. Pride was taken in the instrument on which work was to be completed.
Today, most people will never have such an amazing story behind their desk. More often than not, solid wood has been replaced by particle board. Craftsmanship and solid durability has been replaced by fashionability and cheapness. Most people probably do not contemplate the meaning behind their desk nor the impact that their desk has on their productivity and happiness.
Being an office manager, it occurred to me that desks are a really important piece of equipment that is often overlooked. I argue that a well-built, well-designed desk has an impact on the efficiency of work done and the happiness of the person working at that desk.
I embarked on a quest to find the perfect desk for my own personal office. I was aware of many desk options. From folding plastic tables to Jeff Bezos/Amazon door desks to prefabricated desks, the options were overwhelming. I decided, in order to limit my desk hunt, to focus on build quality (materials, durability, etc.), price, and adjustability.
After much debating and research, I finally selected what I consider to be the perfect desk for the modern worker. In fact, the desk I chose was not really designed to be a desk at all. Built by Gladiator, the Gladiator 6 foot workbench has the perfect balance between build quality and cost. One has the option of a thick (1.75 inch) wood top in either maple or bamboo. The legs are height adjustable, allowing the desk to go to a maximum 42 inches tall. This allows for the option of a standing desk, something that some office workers are embracing. In addition, a screw-on powerstrip can be added to the back of the desk, allowing for easy plug-and-play of devices and computers.
Although not everyone would like the aesthetic appeal of the Gladiator workbench, I can tell that this workbench was created by, and for, those that take pride in the quality of the area in which they work. I purchased the desk on sale for $350 from Sears. If you are looking for a large computer desk that is also capable of holding 3000 pounds, look no further than Gladiator.