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Organization for the Unorganized

February 27, 2009 Tagged as Organizing, Wendy

Organization is not one of my strong suits. Never has been and likely never will be. But amazingly I recently received an award for being the most organized staff member at my school. I was baffled and a few of my close friends snickered, but, as I thought about it more, it may not have been so unbelievable. You see, I have mastered the art of looking organized. No, it’s not the same as actually being organized, but for the organizationally challenged like me, it seems to work!

First of all, I am very involved in my school and have my hands in a little bit of everything. As a result, I often have a lot of paperwork littering my desk. This makes it difficult to find what I need, especially the spiral notebook I need to take to a particular meeting. I solved this problem by keeping a tiered file holder on my desktop with two multi-subject spirals—one for school-level meetings and the other for district-level meetings. No more searching!

Computer files are also a big part of my day-to-day life. I’ve been in the same school district for nearly 10 years, which equates to a lot of computer files! Since I have also taught several grade levels, I first sort my computer files by grade level, then by academic year. Within each academic year, I have file folders for each subject area or project with which I am involved. It makes finding what I need so much easier!

One final thing that may have helped me to fool everyone is my attention to detail and never-ending need for perfection. If I’m sending an e-mail to other staff members, I make sure it’s organized to the hilt so others will know what I am talking about. When I turn in something that will be reviewed by someone else, such as a Career Ladder portfolio, it is color-coded and indexed. Seriously. It’s kind of scary. No one can tell me that I forgot a piece of a project because everything is always ultra-organized. It certainly didn’t start out that way, but the final product always is.

I may never deserve the organizational award, but I can sure play it off like I do. And I am always looking for new ways to fake my organization skills. Any thoughts?