How can I better organise my work?
Many people are not as organised as they, could be.
Many people are not as organised as they, should be.
As a result of being in a state of relative disorganisation, many people are not as efficient as they otherwise would be; and therefore they are more stressed than they otherwise would be.
Organisation is the stuff of life. In fact, to survive, life requires a high degree of organisation.
Organisation has various aspects:
1. Mental organisation
2. Task organisation
3. Work station organisation
4. Interpersonal organisation
Each one needs to be perfected. Let us look at each one.
Mental organisation is the act of taking charge of your own brain and insisting that you concentrate on one task at a time. You can only focus your mind on one thing at a time. You cannot effectively perform two complex tasks at the same time.
You cannot simultaneously, read a book and drive the car.
Too many people try to "multi task".
Multi-tasking is a mistake. It has been sold to you as a virtue. You have heard that it is a good thing to multi task.
Multitasking is the misguided attempt to do multiple tasks simultaneously. This is not a good idea.
If you are trying to land an aeroplane in bad weather you should not be doing anything else!
Here is the truth. You are better off developing the ability to concentrate 100%, on the task at hand.
Multitasking is committing the error of "failing to concentrate on the task at hand".
Mental organisation is the act of putting all your tasks onto a timeline, and then taking them on one at a time. Mental organisation is the act of concentrating on the one thing that you are on and not allowing your mind to wander, be distracted, drift off, or lose focus.
Concentrating on one thing, making progress by force of your concentrated brain power; this is a wonderful thing to be equipped with.
If you can organise your thoughts, concentrate, focus your mind , without distraction, then you will make more progress, in one hour, than you would in four hours of distracted, fragmentary and bitty effort.
Organisation means this:
Stop trying to multi task. Don't allow yourself to be so easily distracted.
Instead place your tasks on a time line and then make a superhuman effort to concentrate 100% on the task that you are on. Push that one task as far as you can. Then rest for a few minutes, and refocus your mind on task 2. Then rest and then focus your mind 100% on task 3.
Continue on in that way for the next 100 years.
Organise your mind and concentrate 100%.
Above we said; "put your tasks on a time line".
This means task organisation.
Tasks have to be organised into priorities.
Prioritisation means organising tasks by means of one of two criteria:
1. Value order
2. Logical order
Organising tasks in terms of value order
This means that you place tasks in terms of the highest value first; lowest value last.
Of these three tasks, which has the most value, which has the middle, and which has the least value? Then do them in that order.
Organising tasks in terms of logical order
This means that you place tasks in terms of the order necessitated by logic. You put your socks on before your shoes. Not the other way around. You put your shoes and socks on after your trousers. Not the other way around. You put your trousers on after your pants. Not the other way around.
Certain things have to be done in strict order
So, you must organise work in term of both value and logical sequence.
This takes more concentrated thought to figure out the best organisational order.
Work station organisation
Work station organisation means ensuring that your work area is tidy. That means putting things back in their proper place the moment you have finished using it. As opposed to dropping the document down onto the table top and saying to yourself, "I'll put it back in the file folder later, when I'm not so busy."
Then you put a bag you were using on top of the document and later still, a box on top of the bag.
At the end of the day you are knee deep in papers, bags, boxes, cups, pens and files. Your work station is a mess. When someone challenges you on the state of your work station you say, "I know where everything is. This looks like a mess to you, but I have my own system of working. I like to work in creative chaos, but I can assure you, I work better this way."
Don't kid yourself.
Disorder is death.
Good order is efficient.
By definition. Chaos is chaotic.
Impose order on chaos.
Put things back in their proper place.
Then you will know where they are.
Then you will find them the moment you need them.
Then you won't lose anything.
Then you will be faster, more efficient, less stressed and more effective.
Ensure your Work station is the epitome of organisation; not chaos.
Inter personal organisation
All the above notes relate to your own personal performance.
But the fact is that you don't work on your own. You work with, and you work for, other people.
Therefore you need to organise your work output with the work output of other people.
That means that you should encourage the others around you to engage in the disciplines mentioned above; (concentration, value order, logical order, proper placement and physical organisation).
And in addition interpersonal organisation means orchestrating your efforts so that the sum total of the work outputs of the team is a productive coordinated effort.
Like a symphony orchestra playing Beethoven's 5th symphony.
Not only does every musician play the right notes in the right way, they must play them in concert with everyone else. If one violinist is out of synchronisation by two bars, it would ruin the whole show.
If they are to add value, each person has to organise their efforts and coordinate themselves to the larger group.
In this way he succeeds in adding value and will be paid accordingly.
If you don't coordinate and organise yourself and if you are out of harmony with the rest of the group, then you won't add much value and you will be paid accordingly.
Organise and synchronise and harmonise yourself to the rest of the organisation.
And you will be paid accordingly.
For more information about time management training visit the Corporate Coach Group website