Number One Tip for Overcoming a Messy Office

Are you one of those people who keep papers on your desktop because you’re scared you’ll forget about them if you file them away??

Fear of paperWe typically think of filing as what goes into a filing cabinet, but there is a subset of these files that we don’t want to file away for fear of out of sight, out of mind. So instead, we leave a piece of paper on our desktop to remind us to do something, or because we know we need it in the near future… but after we do this a couple of times a day, we end up covering that piece of paper with MORE paper and before we know it, we’re looking at numerous piles.

The reality is- we’re wasting over forty-five minutes EVERY day just looking for things… so what is the alternative? Here comes the light bulb…

We have reference files, (those that go into our filing cabinets because we have to keep them), and we have action files, (those files that require us to do something).

There are several ways to file action items, but here are three ways that can be very effective. These three ways can even be used in combination with one another, depending on your needs and workflow.

1. By Date
Folders for each day of the month and each month of the year, (tickler filing system), is one way to place items that need to trigger you to take action. For example, an invitation with directions on it can go in the folder corresponding to the day of the event. Another example could be a lead who wants you to call them back in one week. Simply put the name and number in the folder dated one week from now, and on that day, when you check your daily folder, there will be the name and number, triggering you to action. Check out if you’re interested in purchasing a fantastic tickler file system.

2. By Action
Any habitual activities can become an action folder. For example, a file for data entry, take home or calls to make. Throughout the week, empty all the items in these folders to keep you on top of those smaller but necessary tasks.

Organized Files3. By Priority
Folders based on priority can be a simple way to efficiently manage the current load of work that requires your attention. This can be broken down using different words that work for you… Maybe you have three folders labeled, Hot, Warm, Cold or Now, Soon, Later or Today, This Week, This Month. File away papererwork based on their priority, and make sure you focus your time and attention on the Hot, Today or Now folders, while checking in with the items in the lower priority folders, and moving them as needed.

I think we all agree that time is flying by, and it is only getting faster. If you want to have more control of your time, including becoming more productive at work and less stressed out in your daily operations, stop making excuses and take some time this week, to implement what you’ve just learned!!

This site is for informational purposes only. It is not sponsored or in any way affiliated with the government. If you are in need of a mortgage loan, consult with a licensed mortgage professional. All fair housing and equal housing opportunity laws apply when applying for a mortgage or buying a home. Copyright 2012.