Does Your Home Office Have a Vision Statement?
What does your home office say about you as a: business owner, individual and professional? Do you really “work” in your home office or is it the best dumping ground ever because you can close the door and walk away?
Whether you are a business owner with a home office or a homemaker with a space designated as your home office…
Your home office should be a place that you do the following:
- prepare for appointments
- schedule appointments
- balance your books
- call your clients
- pay your bills
- keep your paperwork filed away
Your home office should be the:
- place to keep your calendar (one calendar with every appointment on it)
- handle your mail
- keep important papers that you refer to infrequently
So many times a home office can “live” in different parts of your home, i.e. the:
- living room
- dining room
- family room
The key to everything related to being organized, getting organized and staying organized is consistency. If you want a system to work, develop it and work it over and over and over again. Tweak it as you go along but don’t give up and try something different. I think this is how and why people jump from organizing system to organizing system. (That and, every store comes out with new organizing products that tell you that they are “the” answer to becoming organized). This is not a true statement.
Home Office Filing System
A home office filing system should be simple and easy to understand. Unless you want to be the only person in your home that can file away your paperwork, keep your filing system easy to understand. Paperwork can be stressful. We receive more mail in one month than our grandparents received in their entire lifetime. The first key to keeping your system organized is to know what to eliminate immediately.
- Don’t keep the ads and catalogs – if you really shop at L.L.Bean, you can pull them up online and get what you need
- Have a home for paperwork that requires action (I have a Hot and Warm folder) that I utilize and consistently touch every day and every week.
- Make a tax file now! Don’t wait until mid-year to decide that you are going to be organized for 2013 taxes. I have a tax file where all receipts and any other tax donations and write-offs are kept. At the end of every month, I go through them to sort and prioritize them and this takes only a few minutes to do.
- Pick up and open your mail daily! Don’t allow it to pile up.
- If you have children, decide which papers are keepers and eliminate the rest. Sometimes it is the teacher who should receive credit for a job well done…not the student.
When organizing your home office, keep the files that you use the most convenient to your chair. Make it easy for yourself to want to file paperwork often and you will find it easy to maintain.
I’d love to hear your home office stories…what has worked, and what has not worked for you! Let me know. Keep the vision of your home office clear and precise and enjoy your productivity.
I’d love to hear your success stories!
Linda Clevenger, Organization Direct