Spring cleaning is normally a phrase that’s used for cleaning and organizing your home. Getting rid of the old and bringing in the new, so to speak. So, in honor of this yearly tradition, I say why not spring clean your workspace?
Whether you work from your home or an outside office or both, there is no reason to neglect this very important aspect of your job. A disorganized workspace can lead to less productivity. Not to mention, what it says about you. Your work area should make you feel motivated, inspired and efficient; not lost, overwhelmed and stressful. If a client/co-worker stopped by your neck of the woods right now for an impromptu meeting, how would you feel about them seeing your workspace? If your answer is something close to “embarrassed” then it’s time to get organized.
A good place to start is your desktop. It’s very easy to throw anything and everything on that desk of yours. I’m sure the thought process of doing so is that it’s clearly visible and easy to locate. But, what ends up happening is you begin throwing everything on your desk and what was once easy to locate has become buried. And, when you finally need it, you can’t find it anywhere. The time you’ll spend looking for that piece of information is time you could spend being more productive.
Shred old papers that you don’t need any more. Sort your documents, discard those old post-its, create files that easily house them all and put them away in a few attractive file cabinets. The important thing to remember is to continuously file them. At the end of the day, clean up, put things away and get your to-do list ready for the following work day.
Don’t forget your digital spring cleaning. Go through all of your emails, read and unread, and create folders for them, as well. This way, you won’t have to perform a search every time you need to locate an important conversation. And, if you’re still operating with paper business cards or an address book, now is the time to let those go and use Plaxo’s digital address book. All of your contacts are safely stored, synced, updated and can be accessed from your mobile devices.
Make spring workspace cleaning a tradition and you’ll be surprised of how much inspiration you can create for yourself.