I freely admit it. I am not an overly organized guy. I hate filing papers away. I would rather just push it aside for later.
We all know later never seems to come.
Back in 1998 I moved into the office I currently occupy. Before then I had a desk on the sales floor in our baby department. But now I was Vice President and I needed to be in the office. We bought some new office furniture and built a desk in the corner of my dad’s office. Yes, I sat with my back to him all day working on my computer, etc.
Dad retired in 2005 and I took over as President. We moved his big desk to his man cave and replaced it with the round table that had previously been in the corner where my desk now sat. I stayed put, tucked in the corner with my messes piled all around me.
Soon my messes spilled over to the round table. Once every month or so I would bring in a big box and purge everything I could, clean up the piles and file/recycle as many papers and catalogs as possible. While cathartic, it was really only a stop-gap. The books in my library were still stacked two feet high. Piles from previous purges sat mocking me. Worst of all, a couple slips of urgent papers always seemed to go missing.
Yesterday I blew it all up. It was time to get out of the corner. I removed the round table. Replaced it with a long, rectangular table that will serve as my desk for now. Moved my computers and printers. Cleaned and dusted. Put an old hutch on the credenza behind my desk. Filled it with books.
Today I will be going through every pile, every drawer, every nook and cranny. A place for everything and everything in its place. I don’t expect to have everything done today, or even this week. But eventually I will have a newly organized and newly designed office.
Will I be more organized going forward? I can’t say for sure. But I knew I would never be more organized doing everything the same old way. Albert Einstein gets the credit for this simple thought…
If you want a different result, you have to do something different.
I’m doing something different.
PS The lesson in all this is to evaluate everything you are doing and the results you are getting. Not getting the results you want? Do something different. Not getting the traffic you expect from your marketing? Market differently. Not getting the kind of referral business you expect? Train your staff differently. Not getting the margins you want? Price your products differently. Not as organized as you want to be? Set up your organization differently.