Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Office Clutter: Physical and Virtual

The Commercial Appeal had an article on the August 5 paper which talks about office clutter, its effect on productivity, and what to do about it (Office Clutter Decreases Productivity).

You can find some good advice as far as the physical clutter that can hamper your productivity. However, virtual clutter has the same effect.

If you have an organized physical workspace, then you probably have a file system in which you store documents related to various aspects of your job. Your computer and your email should have folders with the same structure as your physical file system.

Do you have a file folder for a certain committee in your filing cabinet? Then create a folder in your Outlook account with the same name. Then move all pertinent and important messages regarding that committee into the folder. Not sure how to do that? Outlook 2003 users click here. Outlook Web Access users click here.

Also, you should have a folder on your computer with the same title. This is where you can store all electronic documents regarding that committee (agendas, minutes, stats, etc.). To create a folder, access your My Documents folder. Click on File, point to New, then select Folder. Name the folder then move existing files into that folder by clicking and dragging.

Also, while you are at it, delete all those messages and documents that you no longer need. On top of that, create an Archive folder to keep things that you just can't throw away.

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