Organization Habits That’ll Make Your Business Insanely Productive

0fabd4631e204bc2ab050a5301ed0cb6An organized work space is a productive work space.

I learned this first hand after working for two employers in the same industry whose organization habits were like night and day.

My first company was neurotically organized, so much so that our personal offices were annually audited down to the location of our stapler. If something as small as a paperclip was out of place it could affect our overall performance review.

The second company I worked for had hardly any form of organization. When I found a paperclip I considered myself lucky. Having worked in two opposite environments, I can see clearly how order increases productivity by leaps and bounds.

While working for the borderline obsessive compulsive employer I took for granted how easy it was for me to finish tasks quickly and efficiently. The reasoning for their strict organization standards was clear once I left and saw how much less work I finished per day without the structure.

So what about their procedures kept us organized? Here are the three main organization rules they enforced that helped us get through insane amounts of work.

1. Give your stuff a home.

Everything in our office had a place where it belonged. Open a drawer and you would find desk organizers with labels made out for stamps, staples, pens, etc. Trivial you may think, but consider the amount of time you spend searching for the tools you need to work when they’re not readily available.

Of course your tools may be different, but the principle remains the same. Give your stuff a home and you’ll avoid using precious minutes of the day locating things you need to get the job done.

2. Pack it up, pack it in.

Our desks had to be clear each night before going home. They said it kept our offices looking presentable and welcoming. Sure, that’s a good reason, but there’s an underlying benefit to packing it up before packing it in for the night.

It kept us from leaving piles of unorganized pending items on our desk for days, weeks or months. We rarely lost information or forgot about important details because we went through our work and put everything away each evening. Then we started each day with a clean slate ready to tackle more work. So before you call it quits at the end of the work day give yourself some time to pack it in rather than dumping work in a to do pile.

3. Standardization is your friend.

This was once my least favorite organization habit because it was a pain to maintain. Now I recognize it as the most valuable habit of a business; using consistent operational processes. At my highly organized job there was standardized instructions for each procedure. Every file cabinet in each office had to use the same system.  Every problem was resolved the same way.

How was this helpful? I hardly ever wasted time reinventing the wheel. The benefit of standardization was abundantly clear each time my less organized employer ran into difficulty resolving issues. Tons of time was wasted.

How can you standardize your business?  Develop an organized paper and virtual filing system. Start drafting a procedure manual. Each time a situation arises write down the steps you took to handle it. Eventually you’ll have a standardized process that will help you work smarter, not harder.

What are your thoughts on keeping an organized business? Have you used any of these habits before?


Posted in: Business, Career and Work, Life Hacks

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