Organization is not a natural tendency; it is a learned skill that is vital for workplace efficiency and success. I know this to be true, as I have not always been exceptionally proficient in organization and must continue to work at it daily. Here are some quick tips I’ve picked up that allow me to function and thrive in the workplace:
Easy as 1-2-3 – Making a to-do list is a quick and easy way to keep your priorities in check. Personally, I keep two lists; a daily list in a notebook and a weekly list on a whiteboard. Writing things down manifests accountability for tracking and completing projects.
Google It – Have you ever started a new day planner only to make it a handful of attentive weeks before it somehow fell out of your life as quickly as it came into it? It’s time to trade up. With Google Calendar, you have the ability to organize your task list by color, share events from your calendar with coworkers, and create recurring future events. Remember to keep it up to date!
Label Your Heart Out – Folders, emails, office supplies; if everything has a home where it belongs, it will be easier to locate when you need it.
De-Stress Your Desk – And your inbox, for that matter. Take some time to filter through anything that may have wound up on your desk during the week that may distract you from your work. The same goes for your email account. Keep labeled folders for read emails that you may need to refer back to and ditch the rest. You can also filter your emails, and send any non-pressing mail to another folder, so you can focus on what’s important.
Show Up – This is possibly the most difficult lesson I’ve learned: Be punctual. Showing up on time, if not a few minutes early, gives you time to prepare mentally and physically for the day ahead and is a sign of respect to your boss, your coworkers and your clients. Punctuality has never been my strong suit, but I’ve found that setting aside some extra time in the morning to get to work increases my overall productivity. Whether it’s setting an extra alarm to help get you out of bed, or getting out the door ten minutes early to snag a fresh pain au chocolat from a local bakery, being fully present and prepared will help your work day run smoothly.