Success is based upon what you get done as opposed to how long you spend doing it. One of the primary keys to increasing your productivity is being organized. Organizational skills are incredibly easy to understand and implement and yet they have anenormous effect on just how much you get done each day. They are also one of the most common skills found missing in peoples day to day work practices. There is sadly no exact set of organizational skills that will suit everyone. We are after all, all a little bit messy in our own unique way. I have done considerable research however on the subject of self organisation and these are the four tips that I have found to be the most useful. Though simple, how many of them do you currently implement?
Sort out your working area
I admit that generally the more work I do during a work day, the more of a mess my desk looks afterwards. It is of course very easy for high up executives to have spotless desks as they’ve more than likely just spent their day twirling around in their fancy chairs all day. However a messy desk leads to things getting lost and when you are cursing and looking for things, you are not only not getting anything done but also getting stressed out and scaring your co-workers. Everything you need to work with on a daily basis should be easily accessible. And it may sound simple but I learned a couple of years ago that buying a hundred pens every now and then can be a simple yet fantastic investment.
Invest in a weekly schedule
Remember that if you are going to achieve certain things throughout the working week, knowing how and when you need to achieve them is essential. Many people just start the week with objectives and take them as they come, not only is this unorganized but also inefficient. Do not be afraid to even spend two hours per week on this schedule, the time saved will be far more than this.
Keep one schedule not ten
One of the first steps in becoming an organized person is of course to have a schedule like the one above that clearly states everywhere you need to be and what you need to do there each day. However just because a single schedule will make you more organized, that does not mean that three or four schedules should be made just to make sure. You need a single source that illustrates your entire schedule. This can be in the form of a calendar, a PDA, a notebook anything. The point is that it needs to be a single source, so that you can gain an overall picture of what you need to do in a single place. Having fifty different alarms set on your computer telling you that you need to be in different places at the same time is the exact opposite of being organised.
Start every day with a 5 point list
In a world of endless technological advancement, some of the simplest things remain the best. Yes the Stone Age invention of the list is actually more effective than any PDA. Five minutes in the morning writing out the five most important things that you need to do that day can be a very good way of not only getting them done but of preventing yourself doing all the other pointless things you do each day. If you every day you can achieve five important things, rather than completing parts of ten different things, you will be more productive.
I personally consider it nothing but a buzzword since I stopped doing it. Doing more than one things at a time always leads to you being unorganised, it also leads to stress. Simple fact is if you want to really keep track of what you are doing, you can only concentrate on one thing at a time. Therefore any schedule or list that you make to organise your activities, never include and item on either that is two separate things.