If you look at any major organisation, there is this trend for executives to use “palm pilots” in conjunction with software schedulers such as Microsoft Outlook.
What’s really interesting is even with all this technology (and many of these execs are fortunate to have personal assistants) they are still disorganised. Organisation is not about having all the latest and greatest tools, it’s about using common sense and sticking to what works. For some reason many people think that by using these (expensive) tools they will automatically manage their time and be more productive. Sadly, this is not the case. Technology is an aid, a tool. It has to be used and adapted to suit the human being using it.
In most cases a paper diary or planner has proved more valuable in helping people to be more effective with their time and their work.
In one organisation where I had been working with the Head of Department, who was much better organised when he was shown how to use a paper diary rather than the computer one, I had the Manager of Information Technology say to me “what are you doing? You’ll have them all back to using pen and paper!”
Terrible, isn’t it? To think the use of good ole pen to paper to write down your thoughts and ideas, things to do and follow-ups may actually work better than the use of a computer software programme!
Some of my clients have had to use the software in conjunction with their diary, which can easily be done when they are shown how.
I often find that some of the most ‘high tech’ people are the most disorganised, particularly if the technology breaks down.
At least with pen and paper, the only thing that lets you down is when the pen runs out of ink. If your organisation is adamant that you must use the electronic system so that other people know when you are available, then use it for that purpose. However if it isn’t helping you get organised effectively, consider utilising a paper diary as well so that you can stay in control.
Don’t be afraid to get back to basics if you find it all becomes too much.
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