Organization and productivity in the workplace go hand-in-hand. A disorganized workspace leads to time wasted looking for papers, files, office supplies, and other items relevant to your job. Not only does wasted time hurt your productivity, but it can mean increased stress for you and loss of revenue.
There are many ways to increase office organization, but my favorite way is to label, label, label! There are a variety of labelers on the market with their own pros and cons. I personally recommend using a BrotherTM P-touch® label maker, because their label tape has a laminated top layer that helps create durable and long-lasting labels. When labeling, you want to be able to label something once and be done. P-touch label tape is so durable it can even go through a dishwasher. Coffee and tea spills have nothing on these labels!
Here are some quick and simple tips on how to label your way to a more organized workspace:
- To help clear off your desk, label a file folder with the title “Pending.” In this file folder place all papers that are waiting for another person’s response or action. Typically these are papers that you don’t want to forget about, but you can’t file or toss until another person responds.
- Create and label a file folder or bin with “Take to Meeting.” Every time you come across or think of something you need to take to your next meeting(s) place it in the bin or folder.
- Typically we use or reference 20% of what we have, therefore, making it difficult for us to remember the location of the other 80%. In order to easily and quickly locate the other 80% of what you have, group the items together by category and label the location. Labeling will not only make it easy to find items, but it will help you to return items to the designated location. This is especially important if others around you need to find and use items you have. To make labeling a cinch, consider a label maker that can be used independently or connected to your PC, with capabilities for adding images or a logo to your labels.
- Nowadays, with so many electronic devices, it is difficult to determine which cable belongs to which device. You could be sifting fruitlessly through a drawer full of cables trying to find the USB cable for your digital device. To avoid this time guzzler, label your USB cables so you know which cord goes to which device. Print out a label with the name of the device and strategically place the label on the side of the USB end that faces up or towards you when plugging it into your laptop or PC. This way you’ll immediately be able to determine which way to plug in the cable. In order to be more discreet, I recommend labeling your USB cables with black laminate labels with white or gold print.
A little organization can go a long way in helping you save time. Try spending 10 minutes a day implementing one of the above labeling tips and then continue on creating your own helpful tips!