Friday, September 26, 2008

How to clean up your desk

You know I often translate the videos of Henri Kaufman and Pierre Philippe Cormeraie. They expose 7 key points in 7 minutes on a specific topic. This time, they are speaking about how to clean up the desk. But you will see that in fact, this is not the primary issues. The main thing is to have the best desk in order to be efficient in your work.

Today, the video explains you how to clean up your desk:
  • Get back to the original concept: What is a desk? This is a key question you have to ask yourself. Is it a meeting room? Is it a way to show you are organized? Not really, this is mainly a working tool.
  • Clear desk = clear mind ? This is what people think most of the time. But this is not true. There is a new book "perfect is a mess". It explains that cleaning up and maintaining your desk clean takes a lot of time, and that actually it is more efficient to keep it as a mess. The idea is you should have the desk you need to work. You need it to be clear, fine, but it is ok to keep it messy.
  • Everyone has two brain hemispheres. One dedicated to thinking, and calculating, and one for creation. For people that are very creative, it is very difficult to clean its desk. This is hence frustrating, and it is better not to clean it up for this target.
  • Keep things accessible: Far from your eyes, far from your mind. Keep the files you are working on close to you, because they will still be on your mind. If they are piled up out of the desk, you will probably forget about it.
  • The new method: Three piles, one to trash, one to keep, and one "I don't know". Most of the time the "I don't know" pile is full. Therefore you review it, and reorganize it, until it is done.
My advice is that you should not focus on cleaning up your desk. You need to be in an environment that you feel good about it, that stimulates your work force. A clean desk doesn't mean a clear mind. If you really need organization, I recommend you to read some books like Getting Things Done of David Allen. Very good video, because it gives a new focus on the problematic.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks Nicolas ! Good translation...
    See you soon in Paris ?