Many people work in offices. And some of those who work in offices are lucky enough to have their own doors. While most office doors have some sort of label on them instructing co-workers and visitors as to the name(s) of the occupant(s) of the office, many employees feel the need to go beyond the simple nameplate in office door decoration. Especially in a large, corporate office, decorating an office door can be a way of marking an individual's territory or proclaiming a particular style.
Professional Door Adornment
The upwardly mobile in the office are often the least likely to feel the need for excessive door decoration, feeling content with a simple nameplate. However, this is not to say that no consideration has been paid to the matter. An engraved metal nameplate that is properly centred and aligned on the door is far more professional than one that has been made with sticker letters or an inkjet printer.
Simplistic Door Decoration
One of the more common styles of door decoration, this involves merely affixing an amusing or obscure quote on the door, or perhaps a single snapshot of a recent trip. This method is often employed by the cautious, who don't quite feel up to some of the more aggressive forms of decor.
Bitter Jokes on the Door
A common style of door decoration involves affixing clips or photocopies of cartoons that depict bitter office workers1. This style of door decoration is especially common among those who don't actually have an office door, but rather an opening space to their cubicle. Supervisors generally chuckle at these cartoons, but it does seem possible that such could be seen as evidence towards an 'attitude problem' about the company when it comes time for evaluations or promotions.
Family-Oriented Door Decoration
Many employees with children decorate their office doors with pictures of their children or drawn by their children. Interestingly, in some corporate environments, male employees seem to feel more comfortable with such family-oriented door decorations, and in other environments, it is the women's doors that predominate with such decorations. Unfortunately, the nature of such decorations can occasionally become competitive, with employees comparing whose child can draw the best Santa Claus.
Door Decorating Contests
Some people are lucky enough to work at the sort of offices that sponsor contests now and then for door decorating, often in tune with some holiday2. In these situations, going all out decorating your door is actually sanctioned, and supplies may even be provided. Better than that, even, is the fact that prizes are generally awarded. Any type of intra-office competition is apt to lead to a bit of over-competitiveness and paranoia, despite the fact that it's awfully hard to hide how you've decorated your door. That being said, it is not unheard of for especially competitive employees to come in the middle of the night to do their doors when no one else can watch, all in the attempt to have the door be a surprise the morning of the competition. Other employees tend to go for the group effort. This is especially the case for employees who may not each have their own door, being lower caste cubicle dwellers.
Door Decorating, Ninja Style
This is for those who are at the more advanced end of the spectrum, as well as those who don't mind sneaking around the office in the middle of the night - it involves decorating your colleagues' doors without their knowledge. Of course, we wouldn't suggest anything that would get anyone in trouble, because that would just be mean. It's far more fun just to really, really confuse people.