5 Tips to Organize Your Office Life

They say cleanliness is next to godliness. In the business world, it’s organization that reigns supreme. Whether you’re the one running the show, or are in one of the many supporting roles, maintaining a sense of structure in the things you do directly affects the bottom line. Organization means efficiency, which results in things getting done faster and accurately, which then means there’s more time to focus on the next project.

Are you or your staff lacking on the organization front? Start with these five steps to get yourselves back on track.

1. Get Your Desk in Order
We all have that coworker whose desk looks like a post-apocalyptic nightmare. Papers are stacked everywhere. Nothing seems to be in order. Many times, said owner insists they know where everything is, but still, there should be some sort of rhyme and reason to your workspace. While you may know exactly where in a pile of disheveled papers lays that list of notes for the upcoming presentation, what if you’re out of the office and that list only exists on your desk? As easy as it may be for you to find that paper, it shouldn’t be impossible for someone else to find it in your absence. Take some time to organize those piles. File away things that don’t need to be out at all times.

2. File Those Emails
I once worked with someone who, organized as she was in all other aspects of life, had an inbox that gave me night tremors. How so? While she dealt with and filed away top priority emails, there were still in excess of 10,000 — no, that is not a typo — unread messages in her inbox. An inbox with that many emails is difficult to navigate, and such a huge volume can delay even a search tool’s results. Before your inbox gets too unwieldy, create subfolders. And then further subfolders for those. Make a point of regularly moving your emails to an easy-to-find location, and keep your inbox clutter free. If you regularly get emails that you need to keep, but don’t always need to open, set up rules so they’re immediately delivered to a designated subfolder. And when you see junk, delete it right away!

3. Make Lists
It sounds so simple, right? That’s because it is. Instead of consistently racking your brain to remember everything put on your plate, write it all down — or, better yet, use a free program like Sticky Notes to cut down on paper use — and prioritize. Cross things off (or delete) as you go. (There’s a special kind of satisfaction that comes with actually seeing items disappear from a to-do list.)

4. Schedule Your Day
Do you regularly get batches of similar emails throughout the day (like customer service queries) that require timely responses, but aren’t necessarily urgent? Or do you have regular reports that need to be run? Block out certain times of the day/week to dedicate to each routine task you have. This way, you take care of it all in one fell swoop rather than going back and forth all day.

5. Respect the Chain of Command
You might not consider something like this when you trying to get organized, but think about it: If there is no reporting structure, who do you turn to with questions? Are you asking the right things to the wrong person, which may result in misinformation? In what order do projects make their way up the approval ladder? Are you skipping steps, resulting in backtracking later on? Have a structured system in place and diligently adhere to it; everything will get done much faster, without the excessive back and forth.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

Call (888) 732-6638 or Receive a Live Webinar



Team Building in the Workforce

While much of the country finds itself on ice, eager to begin thawing out from winter’s chilly embrace (even down south where Actsoft’s home office is), in the wake of a storm appropriately called a “bomb cyclone,” it may seem strange that I’m over here thinking about the idea of summer outings. (Or maybe not. It’s cold and I crave warmth.) As I sit at my desk, a scarf wrapped around my neck, I can’t help but think ahead to warmer temperatures and being outdoors. And, being in the office, my train of thought then drifted toward summer outings.

As it is, we already spend a significant chunk of our waking hours surrounded by our colleagues — do the math and it works out to about 37 percent, assuming a 40-hour workweek with 8 hours of sleep each night. So you’d have to be crazy to suggest everyone get together after hours just to hang out and maybe play some games, right?

But think about it: the fact that they spend so much time with each other at work is actually reason enough to spend time with those same people outside. In a more relaxed setting, away from phone calls, pressing deadlines, and meeting invites, your staff stands a good chance of bonding with each other. Not only is it a good way for everyone to recharge, but this type of camaraderie helps get those creative juices flowing and can lead to some worthwhile brainstorming sessions, both during and after the outing.

Here at Actsoft, we specialize in ways to help companies increase their workers’ efficiency while on the job through our robust suite of tools. But it’s also important to remember that there are some things — like a well-executed company outing — that can help to reinvigorate your team’s passion and drive and, in turn, positively impact their job performances.

In order for these types of excursions to really benefit your company, should you be pushing the traditional team-building activities, or opt for something new and out of the box? (Hint: If you’re trying to encourage brainstorming, and creative thinking, go for something they haven’t seen before, or wouldn’t expect.)

Brian Scudamore, CEO of O2E Brands, wrote, “The most successful, memorable team-building events are ones that don’t feel like a day in the office. … Working toward a common goal allows bonding to happen more organically and far more effectively.” In other words, ditch the college orientation–esque icebreaker games or the trust falls. Nobody enjoys those and they ultimately accomplish nothing.

Escape the Room has become an increasingly popular option for companies. Small groups are ostensibly locked inside a room and given an hour to solve a number of puzzles that ultimately reward them with the key that lets them out. It has nothing to do with work, but it requires teamwork, and people generally enjoy it. And don’t think your excursion even have to be that involved. The sky’s the limit when it comes to activities. You could go all out and challenge staffers to conquer their fears (Zip lining, anyone?), or just book an afternoon cruise. What is most important is that you solidify that bond between your company’s colleagues, which then positively impacts your business needs and goals.

At the end of the day, what’s important is that you find something interesting that your staff enjoys; one that isn’t met with antipathy and that doesn’t feel like a task in itself.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

Call (888) 732-6638 or Receive a Live Webinar