Cleaning up chaos and restoring order to your business is all about finding the right tools and methods that work for you—and your unique type of business.
Apply as many of these ideas as you can to help you stop yourself from sliding down the slippery slope towards overwhelm.
Create a Company Manual
In fact, create two—a master manual for yourself, and one without personal information for your VA or project manager. Your company manual should act as a complete package, should anything happen to you, so that whoever is handling your business affairs can find everything they need, including your master passwords, site URLS, contractors to be paid, instructions, business documents—and the password to your computer or phone.
Use Mobile Apps
Is half your life lived on your mobile? If your answer is “yes”, consider using mobile apps to help you stay organized.
You can download:
Maintain Your Office
Once you have de-cluttered your physical workspace, fit maintaining it into your daily routine. File everything the moment you use it and take note of where clutter tends to build up again.
Clutter is a sign that something is not working for you. So analyze what you are missing and do something about it. It might be a bigger in-tray, or a different place to put your pencil holder or a bulletin board instead of a wall calendar—but whatever gives you problems, don’t wait till clutter builds up again. Fix it straight away, make sure it works—and get back to keeping your office a clean, inspirational, organized, pleasant place to work.
Change Your Chair
Another source of “office blindness”: office chairs! If you’ve been sitting on the same rickety swivel chair for years (and you habitually end up going to bed with backache), it’s time for a change!
Go to your local office supply store—or the Re-Store, if you’re on a tight budget—and choose a new (or at least different) office chair. Test it out.
And do make sure you get the best chair you can afford. (It will be worth it in increased comfort, better temper—and increased productivity.)
Get Rid of Annoying Software
If you’ve been struggling along for years with a clunky graphics editor or an invoicing system you have to practically re-learn every time you access it, junk that too!
Read reviews. Shop around online. Look at apps, if you prefer apps.
Find software that does a better job and is easier to use, saving you time and money.
Change Your Habits
It isn’t just spaces or software that don’t really work for us sometimes: It’s habits too.
What are you doing that is unnecessarily complicating your business?
To Avoid Overwhelm, Set Daily Limits
If you have a lot to de-junk—either online or offline—be realistic and consider whether or not physical limitations or emotional ones will likely have you quitting, half-way through. Break down your de-junking process into daily “chunks” for as long as you need to. Set limits in time or task: An hour a day or a task a day.
Try to make your de-junking sessions at the same time daily. Even if you de-junk for as little as fifteen minutes a day, this will become a habit—and your fifteen minutes will soon become a satisfying part of your daily routine.
What did you think of these ideas? What do you do to keep your business streamlined and operating efficiently? Share your tips in a comment!