Organizing, Redesign & Staging

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Home Office or Workspace Organization

I found a great way of describing the stages of orderly workflow, in an article by Cynthia Kyriazis. Wanted to share...

STAGE 1: STACK Stack it, collect it, gather it…the idea is the same. As incoming information that comes into your office, take it and put it ONE place. This includes faxes, overnight mail, things people bring you, items you print off your computer and don’t forget those notes you bring back into the office after a meeting. Just learn to put them in one place.

STAGE 2: SORT Sorting is the basis of all time management programs. When you sort your time, you put it in your calendar or appointment book (i.e. from 1-2:00 you have a meeting with Dan). Well, you also sort paper. You take it out of where you have stacked it and you begin to determine what to do with it. The secret is to not pick it up and put it back in the stack -- that just wastes your time. When you pick it up, be prepared to make a DECISION to move it forward to it’s next logical ACTION.

STAGE 3: ORGANIZE IT Someone asked me what the difference was between sorting and organizing. Sorting helps you DETERMINE next actions. Organizing is STORING the paper in a way that helps you retrieve it quickly, reducing the stress and complications involved when you don’t have a system or infrastructure.

STEP 4: PRIORITIZE This has to do with time management. Once you have practiced the first 3 stages of workflow, prioritizing is what you do next. You determine which actions are most IMPORTANT and plan your actions from there. Without priorities we are busy...but not necessarily PRODUCTIVE.

STAGE 5: TAKE ACTION / IMPLEMENTATION. That’s what it’s all about. If we’ve worked through the first 4 stages, this is the one that makes it all happen.

Excerpted from