Whether you work out of an office, a cubicle or a vehicle, the area that you do business from is your command center. This is your personal space that dictates how you perform.
An organized, de-cluttered work environment promotes creativity, productivity, and growth. It allows you to perform at the top of your game. It separates you from the rest. In an environment that is set up for you to be at your best YOU WILL SUCCEED.
Some concepts you’ve heard that can be disregarded from the start if you choose are:
- There is no one way to ‘organize’ or ‘de-clutter’
- There is also no way to ‘de-clutter’ or ‘be organized’ once and for all
- There is no ‘right way to file’
- You office will NOT look like the front of a magazine cover UNLESS this truly works for you
- You must use technology to be organized/Go Paperless, etc. (this is good for about half of our population- the other half does better with paper)
Here are some suggestions to keep in mind IF they apply to you:
- A filing system works if you can locate anything immediately when asked to, AND your staff or assistant can
- An ‘in-box’ and ‘immediate action’ box are VERY helpful to have at your fingertips and address daily
- A calendar is important- whether it’s on your phone, your computer, your desk, your wall, or all of the above. Yes- you may be duplicating your efforts- but sometimes that may work best
- A daily ‘to-do’ list is very important. This list is crossed off at the end of the day (by hand or virtually), and re-transcribed for the following morning using prioritization.
- If you like stacks or piles, or sticky notes or bulletin boards- go for it. The only rule is that you MUST know what is in each pile, and sticky notes and bulletin boards rotate. Get rid of what doesn’t apply
- If you must have all of your stuff in front of you, and it doesn’t work if you file it or neatly box it away- this is fine. The same rule applies- you MUST know what is where.
- When you set us a SYSTEM of any kind, you must maintain it and your staff or coworkers must be aware of it.
- Most importantly- Everything MUST have a home. Everything MUST be put back in its home after each use. Everyone who is involved in the business MUST know where the home is- and play by the rules.
Overall, you will have a much calmer and less chaotic work life if you maintain balance and order. You don’t have to be great at it. You don’t even have to be really good. You DO need to consciously make an attempt and make it a part of your focus. It will make your task more efficient, your job easier, and most importantly, set you apart from the rest.
Missy Bystrom is the owner of The Organized Connection located in Cleveland, OH and Orange County, CA. Missy’s blog gives weekly tips and tricks on becoming more organized and having a more peaceful household. If you would like to become a certified professional organizer, follow this link. If you would like to get more extensive information on organizing your household, business or personal, follow this link