Turning my New Leaf Now

I am going to be coached through this by Kevin starting next week, however I am going to spend some time between now and preparing.  As part of my preparation are my "Before" pictures.  I am very excited about reigning in all this clutter, but moreso I am SO ANXIOUS to start working on the projects and tasks that I know will make my business more profitable and our employees happier.  I have managed a paper task list (or 100s of them) for more than 10 years and it doesn't work.  It only super stresses me out since I seem to spend all my time listing things that aren't getting done.  Some of them have start dates of 2005 and earlier.  It's pathetic and really stresses me out.  And it aggrevates employees beyond no end that the tools/things they need aren't getting done.


  • Here are the pictures of the desk surfaces in my office.  You will see 11 piles on the desk surface behind where I sit. I know for a fact that one of them has ben there since 2006 and another since 2004.  The others are pretty current (in comparison).  The upright files are a failed attempt to have meaningful meeting with each employee - putting scraps/paper in them for a future agenda item for a meeting that doesn't get held.   :(  The binders behind me are referenced and about 50% of them are used, the other 50% completely out of date.  The stacks of product samples on top of my wood cupboard/files need to be located elsewhere or tossed.  They have taken over the view since 2006.
  • Here are pictures of the inside of the drawers.  Inside the drawers are pretty functional actually.  The bummer is that they don't get used.   :-\  My pen drawer is used for scrap paper to jot down voice mails and for paperclips.  The rest of the items don't see much use but they are handy when I need them.  The next drawer is my personal junk in the front, and notecards for writing quick thank yous to the employees upon occassion.  The next drawer is empty files and hff and my personal food/spice stash.   8)  The next two files are the real crime.  The top one is the latest attempt on getting organized (circa ~2008) and the one below that is the previous attempt (circa ~2005).  The files were set up, project list put on a piece of paper.  Then I failed to ever use the files or let them do their job, instead creating new files that sit in a pile on top of the desk or leaving paper just in a pile without a file.  The final two files (in the wooden hutch) were set up in 2001 when we moved into this office space.  Reference % = MAYBE 5%.  Pretty much just taking up space.  Finally - INSIDE the wooden hutch.  Some permanent records like the corporate record book, the rest stacks from probably 2003-2004 put there when cleaning my office surfaces for a meeting - probably a new employee interviews or something where I wanted to make a good impression.
  • Final two shots.  One is a box of papers under my desk - this box is from our initial move here in 2001.  I looked in it in November 2006 the last time.  I actually did purge a little of it at that time.   Finally, just an overall view of the U-shaped work station overall.

    Good Luck Me!  I am so anxious to be functional and not crippled any more!  I am mentally blocked on nearly every project that I want to have done.
  • Sarah,

    Awesome! I appreciate the final "big picture" shot and the "under the desk" shot.

    TRO Maxim: "Old piles are someday/maybe or junk piles. Don't sweat them." We'll show you exactly what to do with those when we do your office sweep together. By the end of Day 21 (or the 21-day follow-up), they will be gone forever.
  • Thanks for the reassurance! 
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