7 Tips to manage information BEFORE it overwhelms
Office Organization Tip
By Laura Lee Rose, author of TimePeace: Making peace with time
Did you know that the 3rd week of April is “Organize Your Files” week?
Here’s 7 quick tips to prepare for this upcoming holiday…..
Office organization is an important step toward both releasing clutter and creating more time in one’s hectic schedule. In this information age, many of us receive thousands of emails a day as well as dozens of snail mail packages and papers. Before drowning in this information, experiment with these 7 simple tips for both paper and electronic posts.
7 tips for paper and electronic clutter:
1) Don’t bring it in the house or office in the first place.
I do a quick elimination at the mail box. If it’s junk mail, advertisements, etc I note the ones I am interested in and toss the rest. The ones I am interested in, I look at on-line.
2) Once in the office, sort into three boxes/containers: TODAY, This week, later.
Once sorted in my time-sensitive boxes, I can prioritize my time appropriately.
3) Release the need for paper.
Acknowledge that everything is currently available remotely through the internet. There’s always ways to replace or get another copy.
* There same ads are normally on the store’s website.
* The magazine/newspaper/newsletter often have on-line version.
* You can easily get replacement receipts and bank statements.
Revisit your real need for the paper trail. If it is an imaginary dependency, then toss it and discontinue the paper subscription. Continuely ask yourself “What’s the worst that can happen if I threw this away? Isn’t there a way to retrieve this if and when I really needed it?”
4) Take on an On-Demand and Abundance mentality.
Instead of cursing the abundance of email and post mail, appreciate and use that knowledge. Realize that even better information will continually come to you. Therefore, you never need to save something “just in case you need it in the future”. There will always be an abundance of information exactly when you need it. If you haven’t read or used it within a month, it is now obsolete. Toss it. Release the old to make room for the better.
5) Create email Message-Rules
Setting up Message-Rules allows you to presort your email, even before you see it. Investigate your mailer for the feature “Create Message Rules”. Create different email folders and message rules for different subscriptions, subject lines, sender or from names, and topic headers.
6) Time-sensitize your in-box with “TODAY”, “This week”, “Later” action intentions.
Flag the items you need to “take action today” using your email message flag feature. Items that you can deal with later move to your email LATER folder. The only thing in your inbox should be things you need to deal with today or this week. Everything else is placed in its proper folder. If stays in your LATER box over a month, delete it.
7) Block time to review your email.
Don’t interrupt your day every time an email, a phone call, or an instant message comes in. Allow your mail-rules, voice mail, and do-not-disturb features to do their job. Create automatic responders to initially respond to incoming email (i.e. announcing that you have received their email, that you need some time to review, and that you will have a quality response within 2 business days. If it is an emergency, ask them to call you.)
Scheduling a block of time to handle the accumulated requested (instead of being interrupt driven) is a more effective use of time.
I am Laura Lee Rose, author of TimePeace: Making peace with time. I am a business and life coach with over 20 years of corporate experience, specifically in the software industry. I now use my time and project management skills in my own Rose Coaching business, to help people transform the life they have into the life they really want.
Career Question of the week:
“How do you transition from a corporate job into consulting or self-employment?”
As business coach, I recently received a question regarding “How do you transition from a corporate job into consulting or self-employment?”
This is a great topic, because the answer is useful whether you are interested in starting your own business; OR moving into a totally different career path.
This is a complex topic. The below tips are very general, intended to provide some concepts and structure for your next chapter. If you are serious about taking that next step, I recommend one-on-one success and business coaching sessions. Once you have resolved the following areas, your next steps will be clear and easy.
Fear is typically the reason many of us stay in a position or at a company that we have long outgrown. Although there may be many reasons, there are only a few issues that constantly taunt us back to the status-quo versus taking that leap:
- Will I be able to sustain my current life-style as an entrepreneur?
- Will I have my spousal and family continued support and understanding?
- Do I have adequate know-how and energy for this new venture?
- Will this new career make me happy?
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Time Management Question of the week:
Is time driving you or are you driving time?
Take this quick challenge to find out your Time Management IQ.
Time Management Question of the week:
Can’t find the time to do all the things that you think you should do?
Need to network, exercise, catch up with friends or family, clear out that closet, write that book, learn a new skill etc?
One idea is to try to combine some tasks. Best approach for success is to combine something annoying to do, with something fun.
One example is that I recently scheduled a professional networking “Meet-up” (meetup.com) event with a walk around Shelley Lake. It’s a beautiful lake. Fresh air is a good stimulus for creativity and inspiration. And I NEED the exercise. I also want to start networking with friendly and valuable folks like you. So, I’m trying to combine the two. By making an external commitment to be there — it’s now something I can’t easily wiggle out of. It’s not expensive and it’s healthy. Not everyone will be attracted to this type of activity. But the folks that are, will be the kind of folks that connect with me
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Time slot: 4 May 14:30 – 15:20
Room: Mountain Laurel Friday Center, Chapel Hill
Whether you’re managing a software development project or coordinating your children’s soccer and dance lesson times, schedules are helpful tools for orchestrating a sequence of events. Most schedules involve a start and end date, and include tasks, task duration, and dependencies between tasks. But no matter how well you plan for a series of events, unexpected events will compete for time and threaten deadlines. People you hadn’t anticipated will step into your plans and begin to influence, control, and often complicate things. When we do not handle unexpected events and the interpersonal elements well, our schedules fall apart.
Good scheduling is very difficult, a combination of art and science. In this presentation, I will discuss realistic scheduling, which seeks to cover all the above types of events — the planned, the possible, and the unimagined. There are some techniques that can help you keep your sanity, which go beyond the notes, checklists, milestones dates, and appointment books. My twelve tips stress prioritization, clarifying values, and comparing the relative worth of each activity. They combine the conventional checklists with preserving and enhancing relationships to accomplish the desired results.
More Time Management Tips
One effective time management tip is to learn from other people’s experiences. I have authored articles, books and videos on these topics. You can easily find these on my website at http://eepurl.com/kc69P
And, if you are like me, I value both my time and professional development. Taking a convenient on-line class can make self-study more manageable. But sometimes, it’s difficult to find time for convenient on-line self –study. My Seminar Cliff Notes are now available in subscription-ebook form. You receive the presentation slides, speaker notes, exercises, and follow-up consultations via email and facebook chat session.
For more information, check out
Professional Networking Question of the week:
What is an Individual Networking Strategy?
Creating your Individual Networking.
Quick technique for building strategic partners in the office, without compromising or manipulating.
If the idea of “networking” triggers a negative reaction, then let’s use another word. Let’s use “building relationships”. That’s what networking really it. Networking is connecting with others with a specific purpose. You are essentially creating strategic partners in your shared success.
Building the proper relationships at work will allow you to accomplish several things:
1) Autonomy – allows you more access to self-directed projects
2) Mastery – opportunities for growth to excel in the areas that you really want
3) Purpose – clarifies your overall goals within and outside the company
Networking isn’t just for business owners. It is the strategic relationships at the workplace that allow some people to live up to their full potential while others watch from the sidelines.
How does one go about creating an Individual Networking or Marketing Plan?
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