Being organized in the workplace is something that a lot of workers can struggle with. Whether in an office setting or a warehouse environment, organization is a key to success. This could be related to organizing people, paperwork, or even appointments and meetings. So, for today’s return to blog post, I thought we could discuss some tips for organizing in the workplace.

One of the most important tools for any organization repertoire is the calendar. I know, I know, this may seem obvious, but not everyone uses this tool to its full potential. It’s one thing to write stuff down, but it’s important to regularly check and update the calendar. Once something is scheduled or planned, write it down immediately no matter how far in advance because this will breed confidence in referencing the calendar if you feel like you’re forgetting something.

In tandem with the calendar is my favourite organization tactic, which is lists. Once again, this may seem obvious but it’s all about how you write lists. For example, try to keep lists in one location rather than sporadic. I often choose to have a physical book to write lists in, which is the book’s primary use. This way, I always know where to find my master list. Also, group tasks from the same project or department together because it aids in a visual approximation of how to spend your hours based on the quantity of tasks for each category. Next, don’t be afraid to rewrite lists often to maintain this structure. Not only does rewriting allow you to reorder the tasks, but the act of rewriting will reinforce the line items in your short-term memory. This is something I do weekly. Finally, use colours to differentiate deadlines from the tasks. For example, if you have a meeting scheduled for Friday but need to prepare for the meeting ahead of time, you could write the task in black ink, the meeting date in red ink, and the preparation date in blue ink. This creates a visual distinguishability that outlines what and when the task will be and allows you to effectively prioritize each week.

Other physical means of organization include making piles and using file folders. The key to this is consistency. You could group ongoing project documents in a different place than dormant projects. The same goes for immediate tasks or tasks you plan to complete that day, which could have their own pile/folder/box. Posting things around your cubicle, desk, office, workplace is also an important tool. This allows them to be quickly referenced and remembered because they quite literally stare you in the face each day. The added benefit for posting things up on a wall is that if it’s a common area, they will be visible to passersby as well.

Finally, a lot of these tactics can be modified to suit organizing people. Themes of consistency and checking in with people. Using paperwork to define tasks and deadlines can be helpful as it keeps everyone on the same page. Basically, use the mentality that you use for organizing yourself and try to extend it outwardly within your teams. This will create cohesion within the atmosphere and develop that consistency and communication we all strive to achieve.

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