The sun is starting to shine a little longer, flowers are starting to bud on the trees, and there is less and less need for hats and gloves. Thank goodness, spring is finally here! Like most great things, spring comes with one annoying side effect … spring cleaning. Just as we clean our homes every spring, let’s use this spring to clean up our work spaces.
Thinning out the Unneeded
Cleaning out your closet is a daunting task. You may have not worn that sweater in over three years, but what if that specific occasion arises and you no longer have it? You convince yourself it’s the right move. You grit your teeth, grab that donation bag, and toss it. It’s difficult to do, but it needs to be done to make way for new things. Just as it’s terrifying to remove articles of clothing you don’t really need, it can be terrifying to delete emails, even if they are no longer relevant. I am not arguing here for a complete deletion of archived folders, but maybe it’s time to remove meeting minutes from a conference call you were on in 2007. If deleting emails is too extreme, I highly argue for a comprehensive archival of older emails. Your inbox should only reflect emails with items that are active or have an action pending. Trust me, there are few better feelings in the world than an empty inbox.
Reach the Overlooked Surfaces
Just as there are parts of every home filled with overlooked surfaces that are hard to clean or easy to forget about, there are areas in your job that may be overlooked. Use this time to make sure that certain areas of your job are getting the much needed once over too.
Take a look around you. How many of the documents that are stacked in piles or pinned to your cork board are no longer relevant? If they are no longer pressing, yet still important, invest in some smart filing systems, or better yet, scan and save to a shared drive (or external hard drive). Having a clean and organized work space will help you concentrate and focus on the important tasks.
Trust me, you and your springtime allergies will thank you!