Ashleigh Johnston, Consultant

Staying organized. It’s a passion of mine from my work, to my email folders to my color-coded closet.  If you are missing important deadlines, shuffling through stacks of papers to locate that proposal or draft or lost in a sea of Outlook email, I suggest you take the time to get yourself organized. Everyone has their own system and I respect that, however I beg the question and would like to quote the infamous Dr. Phil, “How’s that workin’ for ya?”

Admittedly, I can fall victim to not putting things where they can be easily found due to time constraints or just plain laziness. But the moment I feel like taking a shovel to my desk to locate things I know I need to invest my time to get it together. The feeling of not knowing where something is when I need it or when someone else asks for it, be it a colleague or client, drives me absolutely crazy, and honestly, it should drive you crazy too. 

Your colleagues will thank you for it when they know what needs to be done on their end, when and where a meeting is and what the next steps are to help on any given task. When you have yourself organized, it is much easier for those working with you to stay organized as well.

Your clients are also relying on you, often at a moment’s notice, to provide answers to them. Your disorganization or lack of dedication to maintaining good organizational practices should not be the hold up. People can read when someone is out of sorts or seems to be constantly looking for things. Give your clients the confidence that the work you are doing for them is in a safe and easily reached place. It may take some experimenting to find the system that works for you but it is a necessary investment. Being organized will not only help you feel more at ease but exude a confidence level to your clients as well.