5 tips for creating an organized office

(So glad to have Allison Moon, professional organizer writing for us this month – Let’s get organized!)

Buried under piles of paper and wasting precious time?

Here are 5 great tips to help you get organized and maximize your work productivity.

1. The Big Purge

Your first step is to PURGE! This could take anywhere from hours to days! If you’re looking at a big job set aside short chunks of time (2-3 hours), get focused and work as quickly as you can. Ask yourself questions such as “Do I really need/use this?” and “Does this take up more space than it’s worth?”.

Use 4 boxes (or cleared areas) for sorting items into 4 categories:

1 – Trash/recycling
2 – Action items (items requiring immediate attention!)
3 – Items requiring a proper home in your office (into a filing system, bookshelf, containers)
4 – Items that need to go (home, car, donation centre).

2. Get Your Desk in Order

Have you given yourself the gift of ‘negative space’? When it comes to your desktop, less is more. Keep only what you need on your desktop and make room for possibility! Give yourself room to spread out, to create, to sink into the task at hand. Equally important is taking 5 minutes at the end of the day to clear your desktop. When you sit at your desk the next morning you’ll be glad you did!

3. Create a Mail System

Okay, now you need systems that keep you at the top of your productivity game. The key with office organization is our ability to handle the flow of paper. Purchase three stacking trays and sort the paperwork into 3 categories:

1 – Incoming Mail – Mail to be opened

2- Action Items – Mail has been opened and requires your attention (now or in the near future). Have a bright red file folder for Immediate Action items (due within the next 7 days) and another colour for items that are not due for at least a week.

3- Filing – Action taken and ready to be filed. Schedule a time to file every week or two.

4. Office Layout and Zones

Think of your office in terms of zones – Workspace, Reference, Filing, Supplies, etc. Make sure that each of these zones is equipped with the correct items and allows for proper storage. Use attractive labels and colour coding wherever possible for the visual organization it provides. Your office space needs to make sense to you and allow you to function as efficiently as possible.

5. Invest in Quality Furniture & Storage Items

In order to optimize your organization, you’ll need to make sure you have suitable furniture for each of the zones outlined above. Make sure your desk is large enough, that you have room for reference materials, electronics, filing, and supplies. Incorporate furniture that is ergonomically idea for you. This will help you to avoid distraction and discomfort.


Visual Branding…Decorate your office in a way that reflects your Brand Personality! This will add inspiration and reinforcement of your values, purpose and goals as you work! An inspirational quote can go a long way!

Allison Moon is a Professional Organizer and owner of Face Your Space, Professional Organizing. Her company is built on the belief that reducing the clutter in our lives will have a profound impact on our ability to engage more fully in our work, our relationships and our personal goals.  

For more information, reach out to Allison www.faceyourspace.ca

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