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Wednesday, August 22, 2007

WFMW - Home office organization



The old saying that there is a place for everything and everything needs to be in its place certainly holds true when organizing a home office. It doesn’t take long for a home office to become inundated with piles of papers and other various items. Here are some tips on how to organize a home office so that maximum productivity can be achieved.

1. Clear the clutter! Remove every piece of paper and every item from the desk. Thoroughly dust and clean the computer desk area or other work area in the room. If this task is a daunting one – work in increments of 10-15 minutes. It will be well worth the time to have less mess and chaos in a home office. Productivity will increase simply because there will be no more clutter and it will be easier to concentrate on your blogging current projects.

2. Decide what items are most important in the home office and place these items on or nearby the work area. Basic items for most home businesses can include a desktop or laptop computer, a printer, a scanner, a copier, a fax machine, and a telephone. Include a small notebook, along with a few pens and pencils, to keep by the phone for easy retrieval when taking messages. I know this sounds really elementary, but if you're anything like me, you know you end up writing on the back of last month's electric bill!

3. Filing can be an enormous chore for any home office. Setting up a filing system is an important step in achieving maximum productivity in a home office. The type of filing system needed will depend upon the size and type of business that is done out of the home office. If the home office is utilized for personal business, such as household budgeting and surfing the Internet, a small filing cabinet may be all that is necessary. Don’t forget to deal with paper as it arrives - I have a policy that I only touch a piece of paper one time. Decide whether documents need to be filed, placed in a to-do basket, or discarded.

4. A home office should have a criss-cross cutting shredder instead of a regular wastebasket. Shred any old documents that are no longer needed and contain personal identifying information. Remember that identify theft can happen to anyone...I love my trash guys, but I don't know what they do to it once it leaves the end of my driveway.

5. Calendars and planners are the ultimate organizational tool of any home office. It’s difficult to keep track of several calendars. I use two calendars. One calendar is a desk calendar or planner and the other is our family calendar, which is on the wall in the kitchen. Make it part of a routine to record events on both calendars so that there will not be any conflicts in scheduling.


6. Lists are a wonderful organizational tool,and one of my favorites. Just don’t list too many items and don’t procrastinate on items that are necessary but are not fun. Generally, a list of approximately ten items is a very doable list. List the items and place a star by two or three things that are a priority. Don’t overdo and place a star by every item. List dreaded tasks first and when finished with those tasks enjoy crossing them off the list! Makes you feel like you've accomplished something too!


5 things you should do Daily in your office

1. Defragment your computer- you'll waste too much time waiting for things to happen if you dont do this daily!
2. Make sure all notes & addresses are transfered to your day planner.
3. Remove manuals & catalogs from desk top & put them in their proper place.
4. File as you go- dont wait to put things away.
5. Run your virus scan if you do email or downloading. I have mine set to scan when I turn the pc on. That way, I don't have to think about it, as I'm less likely to take the time if I have to remember to schedule it.

So there ya have it. These are some things that have worked for me - head on over to Shannon's at Rocks in my Dryer for more Works for Me Wednesday tips.

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7 comments:

Naomi said...

Some great points here! Thanks for helping on my quest to become Queen Organized!!

Ladybug said...

great tips! Thanks for sharing!!

Kathy in WA said...

This is a great, very complete list of how to organize your home office. Good job of breaking it all down into pieces. I'm so guilty of letting clutter build up. :)

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Marcia said...

These are great tips!!!! I'm passionate about organising and I'm going to link to this soon :)

Organising Queen and
Marcia's take charge blog

Karen@FamilyBriefs said...

Great reminders. My desk definitely needs a good clearing - maybe tomorrow :)

Country Girl At Heart said...

#1 is something I always remember to do whenever I am in a rush to get a certain page opened. Instead of my page popping up, I am immediately with the hourglass icon. How do you remember to defragment every day?

Anonymous said...

These are some great ideas. Thanks. I am going to try and use them in my home office. I was surfing the net and also found this site that was very helpful to me. Just thought I would share it. It's http://officeorganization.wordpress.com