Some people are graced with naturally great organisation skills. Some people aren’t. Nevertheless, most people include organisation as a key skill on their CV. But how do organisational skills actually translate to the workplace?
Success isn’t determined by organisation alone, but there are many good reasons why it can contribute significantly to a positive working environment.
Clear desk, clear mind
Never underestimate the effectiveness of a clear desk. It’s an example of how you work to everyone around you, but more importantly it demonstrates how your mind functions.
A clear desk allows your brain to remain calm under pressure and to focus on the task at hand. If you’ve ever lost focus because you couldn’t find the file you needed to attach to an email or the pen you required for writing down details from an important phone call, you’ll know the slightly stressful feeling that can follow.
There’s also nothing worse than frantically searching for an important report under the mound of paperwork on your desk just before a meeting, to then walk in late, and feel terribly unprepared.
Decluttering your work area is a necessity if you want to work efficiently and successfully; particularly if you work in a high-pressure job where time is precious.
A tidy inbox reflects your performance
A tidy inbox is just as important as a tidy desk. Having one without the other doesn’t work.
Keeping your inbox clean not only avoids you feeling overwhelmed; it also shows your bosses that you are on top of your work.
For many professionals, much of the working day is spent responding to emails, so by being organised you’ll be able to prioritise accordingly and ensure that everything is dealt with in the best possible way.
Timely responses to emails won’t go unnoticed either, that’s for sure. The last thing you want is your boss coming over at the end of the day asking if you got their email that morning, to find that you haven’t even got around to reading it yet!
Your customers, clients and colleagues will trust you
If you turn up to a meeting with all the paperwork and information needed, if you are answering emails quickly and accurately, and if you have your work ready when you say you will, your customers, clients and colleagues will feel at ease around you and have confidence in your ability in the workplace.
It’s always good to imagine it the other way around and see how you would feel if you were the customer. It could be a make or break situation as to whether they receive returning business from you or not – and that’s a big deal!
Organisation is one of the fundamental components of a successful business. No-one wants to work with a scatty, unorganised person who doesn’t come up with the goods – whether that’s someone in your office, or external customers and clients.
You will be setting an example to others
Imagine walking through the office and seeing a neatly organised desk. It would likely make your head turn, and then think: “wow, that person looks super organised!”. That’s never a bad reaction, is it?
On the other hand, it’s probably very unlikely that you’ve looked at the most disorganised person in the office, who’s always late for meetings and never responds to your emails, and been inspired by them.
It goes to show that being organised sets an example to those around you. If people see that you are rarely under pressure and that you always know where things are when they ask you, you will soon find them looking up to you and wanting to mirror your behaviour.
Your productivity will increase
Some well-known creatives have argued against the idea of organisation equalling productivity in the past, but it’s good to remember that you live in a more hectic and challenging society than ever. With so many thoughts and to-do lists floating around your head at any one time – including personal ones – it’s becoming increasingly important to remain organised.
There’s no denying that ideas flourish best when you can see things clearly around you. When thoughts become overpowering, you may struggle with inspiration or to make important choices. In the workplace, this becomes harder to deal with.
By staying as organised as possible in all manner of ways, you will be able to focus more clearly on your work when you need to and not let overwhelming decisions defeat you.
If you can master your organisation in the ways above, then you will be well on your way to increasing your success in the workplace before you know it. It will pay off!
Leila Wright writes graduate careers advice for Inspiring Interns, a graduate recruitment agency. Check out their website to see which internships and graduate marketing jobs are currently available, as well as their graduate jobs page for further opportunities.