It’s hard to run a successful business or team when there’s disorganization. Being organized is almost always a precursor to being efficient. Thankfully, it’s not usually as difficult as business owners and managers assume. With the right plan, you can get your team in order.
5 Tips for Organized Teams
Being organized doesn’t necessarily mean you dot every “I” or cross every “T.” It also doesn’t mean every piece of data or equipment must be stored or managed perfectly. It does, however, mean establishing processes, systems, and best practices that allow you to move with precision and clarity.
Here are a few helpful tips for getting more organized:
- Put an End to Meetings
Did you know that the time spent in meetings has been rising by 8 to 10 percent annually since 2000? An astonishing 54 percent of employees say they spend more than four hours per week in meetings. The average employee has eight meetings per week, while those in executive or leadership roles average 12 or more meetings per week.
While some meetings are necessary, most meetings are a waste of time. They could either be eliminated altogether or optimized for greater efficiency.
The best way to prevent meetings from dominating your team’s calendar is to be more strategic about how they’re run. For starters, avoid big meetings with lots of people. Instead, only invite people who are absolutely necessary. If someone can be filled in later with meeting minutes, they don’t need to be there.
The second tip is to make meetings shorter and more direct. Try to stick to just 10 to 20 minutes per meeting. You can do this by cutting chit-chat and starting on time. Coach people to show up prepared for meetings. If two people in the meeting need to discuss something that doesn’t impact everyone else, they should meet one-on-one afterward.
- Streamline Communication
Put an end to multiple modes of communication. If your team is using email, phone, SMS, and chat applications to communicate, it’s creating a disorganized logjam effect. Messages get lost or ignored. It also creates a sense of chaos when people don’t know where to check messages.
Streamline internal communication by focusing on just one primary channel. Slack is a really good tool for this. Try to avoid email as your primary communication tool, as it’s ripe for distractions.
- Use a Calendar App
Every person on your team should use a calendar application to manage their weekly schedule. Don’t encourage it – require it! A good calendar app makes it easy to schedule meetings, share calendars, set up appointment reminders, etc. It also allows individual team members to block out time on their schedules to perform important tasks. This gives people some form of control over their calendars.
While Calendly is one of the more popular options, it doesn’t always offer the functionality needed by every team. Thankfully, there are plenty of Calendly alternatives, like Calendar.com, HubSpot Meetings, and Doodle, just to name a few.
- Hire the Right People
When hiring people, prioritize organizational skills and other traits that are indicative of efficiency. It’s a lot easier to get someone to follow your systems and processes when they already have a natural bent toward systematization.
- Eliminate Clutter
Finally, do your best to eliminate clutter in your organization. This includes both physical clutter and digital clutter.
As far as physical clutter goes, require employees to keep clean workspaces. Obviously, people need certain items on their desks when working, but have a policy that desks must be cleared before going home for the day.
For digital clutter, encourage employees to use systematic filing systems and folders. Keeping your computer desktop clear of random files and icons can also help you stay more focused and efficient.
Adding it All Up
You can’t restore order overnight. But you can start gradually implementing the right systems and processes to get your team moving in the right direction. Pick one or two of the items from this list and commit to implementing them right away.
For example, you might pick a new calendar app and train your team on how to use it. Then, once you’ve perfected that item, move on to another. This gradual, yet intentional approach will yield the best results.