In my world organization can mean many things including time management, having an organized office, or being organized in the work I am doing for cases generally and in relation to deadlines. As in all worlds, disorganization leads to disaster. It not only can make you late on your commitments, it can adversely affect your business and personal life. For me it can mean losing time (and therefore money) or malpractice if I miss certain types of deadlines. The point is we all have consequences if not organized, if we miss deadlines, or if we don’t meet the expectations we set for clients, customers, or our bosses.

We live in a “what have you done for me lately” world that demands that expectations not just to be met, but exceeded. These include your expectations of yourself. I consider myself to be well organized, but that is because I constantly am working on maintaining organization and control of my time, work space, and calendar. If you struggle in any of these areas you need to come up with SMART goals to help change this. It will be hard work, but you will be happy you did it if you stick it out and improve your organization skills.

Initially set your expectations low and gradually raise them. Becoming organized takes work. If you set the bar to high to start with you have a greater chance of failure and not improving, even incrementally. It also helps to let at least one other person know about your goals. Of course, doing this exposes you to potentially let others down in addition to yourself, but it also give you a better chance of success.

So how do you do this? It depends on you. Will lists and calendaring items keep you on track to meet or exceed expectations? Do you need another person, an accountability partner, to help keep you on track? There are many tools to better organize and keep on task. You have to know yourself well enough to know what will and won’t work for you. Of course, you then have to put what will work in motion and commit to it.

What can you do today, this week, this month, to better organize yourself and set yourself up for success on meeting and, hopefully, exceeding expectations? Answer this question, work it and see how it benefits you in business and generally.

If you are not sure where to start, I suggest you find someone you know who is successful and organized and see if they will formally or informally serve as a mentor or accountability partner for you. For insight on mentoring, I suggest you review an older blog post of mine: “Why Mentoring Matters?”