I enjoy being organized. And if you’re honest, you do too! Organization helps us to be more effective among many other wonderful qualities. If you are looking to better organize your office or workplace or just personally, these tips will help you get going in the right direction.
First Things First
Everyone is different and everyone functions and processes differently. With that in mind something that works for me might not work for you and vise versa. There are a couple things that I like to look at when helping someone create a new structure to follow. I find that these questions help you naturally pick up habits instead of trying to force something that doesn’t come natural. Let’s begin.
I am not saying that you have to be young to use technology, but it does help… wink, wink. If you are in your thirties then most likely writing first will help you. I’m approaching my thirties and I have found that taking notes during a meeting, at a conference, etc. works best for me. After I have had my meeting I like to review my notes and then put them in my database. When I am inputting them in my database I can add more detail and cut back on extra fluff that I don’t really need. This step makes it much easier for me to go back and review notes when following up on something, reflecting or looking forward to what’s to come. I use Evernote, an excellent app that can be added to all your devices and synced in real time (plus it’s free). If you are in your teens or early twenties, then you could probably go digital. However, there are some great things you miss out on when you go digital. For instance, the way writing with pure penmanship has a way of engaging things in your mind which makes it easy for you recall information naturally. Just like studying for a test or getting ready for a pitch you need to get the information in you so you can recall it naturally and be confident in what you’re saying.
Tech or No Tech
This is easy… quite simply. Do you like tech or not? I am half and half – like the great creamer most of us love to put in our coffee. There are some things that don’t need a lot of thought and others that need more time. For example, I like tech for group assignments that I want to follow up on, recurring tasks and simple grocery and holiday lists. For this I use Wunderlist – again a great app that helps you do more for less. They have a free account that I am still using and have not capped out on. On the other hand, my no tech side cries out for what I am personally responsible for. For this I use my Moleskine. I love how it looks/feels and it’s just the right size for me. Each day I use a new page to review what I need to do. If I have something I have not finished from a previous day, I cross it out and carry it over to my new day list. It has been a great tool for me, helping me stay on top of important things that help make my businesses and teams more effective. I also have a key I made on the front page of my moleskin. I use that key with 5 colors to highlight my tasks from the previous week to see how I have managed my time and that of course helps me manage it even better.
And then last but definitely not least…
Team or Boss
Are you a part of a team or are you the boss both of these have important rolls in staying organized? I am both a team member and a boss. For both of these I use my trusty Evernote and Moleskin. Whichever is appropriate, I lead with. In my Evernote account I have loads of notebooks filled with loads of notes and tags. These have quite honestly made it very easy for me to stay organized, to look back and reflect, as well as give me the appropriate information to look forward and plan. The great thing about Evernote is that you can share notes or notebooks with groups and collaborate in real time. If you are a boss or team member this could be a great tool for you to implement into your setting. As a boss it is imperative to your leading that you have correct and current information. This not only helps you lead but it helps your team follow you successfully and confidently. People love structure and thrive in it. It brings out the best in them and allows them to be even more creative and pioneering. Give your team an effective atmosphere to work in by staying organized. As a team member, organization will only help you. If you’re a cool cat at work that is likable and you are organized, then BAM! People you work with will love you and enjoy working with you – except for the insecure ones. But believe me, everyone knows at least one so don’t let that pull you down. Now with all this being said, be kind. Nobody likes a know-it-all or someone that belittles others. Allow your gifts and good habits to make room for you and help others become better.
Here are a couple other great things you can do to get and stay organized.
- Accountability- friends, co-workers and other entrepreneurs
- Deadlines- giving them and respecting them.
- Digital- Dropbox
- Tangible- Filling System
- Delegation- delegate what you’re not good at (if you can).
- Clean work space
Hope this helps ladies! Remember, you are capable! You have what it takes and there are people out there that can help you. Sometimes it takes a little time, but in the end it’s totally worth it.