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Hi, Kell here!
Welcome to the Work Smarter Not Harder Newsletter #71. (20s to read)
According to an article in the Wall Street Journal, white collar workers spend an average 6 weeks per year looking for stuff that they already have. They check their email, their filing system, their hard files….
The more papers you have cluttering your desk, the more documents (hard and soft files) that are not filed in their proper place on a regular basis, the more search time is required.
You can quickly make inroads into the average 6 weeks of search time by:
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- Spending two hours every 6 months purging your stuff. As people go about their work day papers accumulate on the desk and filing cabinets bulge with unused documents.
Research shows that 85% of what we keep we never use again. This means that we need to search through 4 documents to before we get to the document that we need. All this adds to those 6 weeks search time.
I talk more about how to organize your desk.
- Spend two hours every 6 months purging your soft files. In my experience as a time management consultant 95% of files hide the 5% that we need. Purge your soft files on your computer and email will reduce that average 6 weeks search time.
- Organize your hard and soft filing system. With hard files consider using a color coding system to make things easier to see. It may be as simple as putting color coded stickies on the various dividers to indicate which section is which.
Have your soft filing system replicate the same as your hard filing system.
I talk more about how to organize files.
All the best,
Dr Kell Tremayne and the team at Effective Time Management Strategies
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P.P.S For a structured approach to increase efficiency and effectiveness take our free time management course.