How to Convince Your Boss to Buy You a Standing Desk

The message is ringing in your ears: “sitting is killing you,” or maybe you have some health issues and is concerned about the long hours that you spend at work sitting. You would like the opportunity to spend more time on your feet while you work. However, your biggest concern is whether or not your boss is willing to buy you the standing desk that you desire. Rather than worry about if your request would be met or not, come up with a plan and convince your boss to pay for your standing desk. Here are a few tips to win over your boss and get your standing desk:

How to Convince Your Boss to Buy You a Standing Desk

- Present a Doctor’s Note or Request an Ergonomic Assessment:

A medical condition such as rheumatoid arthritis and lumbar herniated disc can worsen by being seated for a long period. If you suffer from any of these conditions, it is wise to get your doctor, chiropractor, or physical therapist to write a medical note recommending a standing workplace as the ideal space for you to work based on your condition. This way, your boss knows that you have a serious concern and is not faking it. The note is also great for those employers who do not allow standing in their workplace. Furthermore, a documented medical condition becomes subject to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and HR policies, and as such, an effort to be more accommodating is highly likely.

An ergonomic assessment can provide a risk assessment that evaluates the effectiveness of the ergonomic process that uses the principles of an injury and illness prevention program to address muscular skeleton disorders. Back and neck injuries are the most common repetitive motion injuries in the workplace that results from the motions one go through time and again throughout the workdays. If the ergonomics assessment produces a result that fails to meet the requirement for your muscular health, you can make the case for a standing desk. 

- Sell Productivity to your Boss:


Be a salesman and explain to your boss the level of productivity that you will achieve from using a standing desk. According to one study, standing desks increase productivity by a remarkable 50 percent in the workplace. Standing helps get things done as it forces you to focus more deeply and plough through work. It reduces fatigue and maintains mental sharpness, something that is not typical of sitting for hours at a workstation. There is value in productivity, and the prospect of increased output will be exciting to hear when presented to your employer. He or she will likely be more willing to pay for a standing desk that will yield increased profit or growth.


Research has also found that standing up may boost excitement and creativity in collaborative work-groups, and diminish the tendency of workers to defend their turf. Assistant Professor of Organizational Behavior at Olin Business School, Washington, Saint Louis, Andrew Knight, supports the notion that standing in the workplace is good for creativity, stating, “Organizations should design office spaces that facilitate non-sedentary work.” Increased creativity and collaboration can also result in greater productivity.


- Set-up Temporary Standing Desk:


Setting up a trial run is a good way to prove your commitment to your boss and to demonstrate that a standing desk is right for you and will indeed work. At no cost to you or your employer, create a temporary standing desk, elevating your workspace by stacking shelves on your current desk. You will likely ease any doubts that your boss may have about your standing desk being a gimmick that is not worth the cost. Build your boss’ confidence in backing your idea, by having him or her tryout your temporary standing desk and have a feel for it in person.


- Make your Standing Desk Cost Effective


Keeping cost down will very likely be a concern for your boss, so choosing a standing desk that is affordable is important. There are different types of standing desks, ranging from expensive ($1300) to more budget friendly ones ($349). If you are looking for a full standing desk to replace your cubicle, you are looking at an expensive piece of office furniture or technology that you boss will probably not approve. Many are inexpensive tabletop standing desks, such jury-rigged setups typically can’t be lowered for use in a sitting stance (non-stop standing is no less problematic than sitting all day).


To ease the worry about cost, a better option is a work platform that’s placed atop your current desk or table that can effectively function as a standing desk. A fixed platform that is height-adjustable, such as the Full FlexiSpot Desktop Riser is the perfect solution that can meet your budget. Its large platform can support up to two monitors or all-in-one computers like an iMac, and have enough space for a keyboard and mouse. The height can be adjusted by two mechanical levers that make the adjustment super smooth.

A laptop mount such as Loctek’s S2L Workstation Gas Spring Laptop Mount Stand is another a great option for laptop users, which can be adjusted to support a sitting or standing position easily because of its gas spring counterbalance technology.

- Be positively Persistent:

It has been a month since you made your request and presented your case to your boss, but somehow it seems like no action has been taken on the matter. Stay positive and be patient because your request can simply be climbing the bureaucratic ladder. This is particularly true in big companies when it comes to buying new technology. Still, it doesn’t hurt to remind your boss or to ask for an update if you are concerned that nothing is being done to accommodate your request. Be persistent but not pushy. If you made a good case, the outcome will be positive.

- Share this Article with your Boss:

This is the simplest step. Make your boss a believer; the more you can strengthen your case for a standing desk, the more likely you are to get one.