You don’t need tricks or gimmicks to improve your organization and productivity. All you need is to set up a few intentional office zones. In today’s post I’ll walk you through how to plan and DIY zones for your office that will supercharge your organization and productivity!
Supercharge Your Organization and Productivity with Office Zones
Creating a few intentional office zones can make a huge difference in the efficiency of your work day. And you don’t have to completely overhaul your office, either. A few simple tweaks can help you develop the appropriate office zones and vastly improve your organization and productivity!
No more rummaging through your notes from the class last night to find your crafting project template and supplies!
And no more digging through the leaky hot glue to find your blog post notes!
[Insert your rummaging/digging story here.] 😉
How to Plan and DIY Your Office Zones
Here’s how you’ll tackle planning and DIYing your office zones:
- First, you’ll determine which tasks you complete on a regular basis.
- Then you’ll group those tasks together as appropriate and make a list of all of the items you need to complete each task in a group.
- Next you’ll create a plan for where your zones will be located.
- Finally, you’ll actually create the zones you need!
We’re doing a lot of ground work in the beginning of this post, and it can feel overwhelming. But stick with it, because once you have your zones, you’ll be amazed at how your organization and productivity skyrocket.
Let’s get started!
Determine Which Tasks You Complete Regularly
The first step in creating your office zones is to figure out which tasks you complete regularly.
Think through your work days. What do you do on a daily basis? Or a weekly basis?
- Work on a computer?
- Complete Research?
- Refer to Books, Magazines, or other print resources?
- Look at inspiring quotes or images?
- Scan Documents?
- Read and Send Email?
- Complete Classes?
- Take Photographs?
- Complete Work for Clients?
- Require Specific Supplies (i.e. erasable markers, page protectors, etc.)?
Write down all of the tasks you complete throughout your work day. Set a timer and complete a brain dump is that’s easiest for you. You can also look through your calendar or planning printables for ideas and reminders.
Group Related Tasks
Now that you have a list of all the tasks you complete a regular basis, you’re going to group those tasks.
You might group tasks based on what items you use to complete them.
Or you might group them based on where you complete them.
Look through your list and put related tasks together in a way that makes sense for you.
Client work and blog post writing go together for me, because I use the computer to complete both. Filing, scanning, and shredding all go together in my mind, so I grouped them.
Go with your preferences and with what pops into your mind, even if it doesn’t make sense to you at first. You can always make changes as needed.
List Supplies Required for Each Group
This is one of the final steps before we get to actually creating office zones. Stick with me!
Take your grouped tasks and make a list of the items you need to complete each task in a group. Do this for each task group you created.
Walk around your office, look in drawers, the closet, on the shelves to help you create a thorough list.
This list becomes the basis for your office zones. Yay!
An Example: My List, Groups, and Supplies
Here’s the list, groups, and supplies I came up with as an example:
- Miracle Morning (Yoga stuff, PowerSheets, Affirmation Journal, Staedtler Markers, Planner, Calendar, Essential Oils)
- Regular Client Work (Computer, Links and Passwords on Computer, Files, Social Media Platforms, Social Media Management Tools)
- Special Projects for Clients (Varies depending on the project but usually involves the computer)
- Research Blog Posts (Computer, Notepad, Pen)
- Draft Blog Posts (Computer, Research, Thesaurus, Notepad for Photo List)
- Take Photographs for Blog Posts (Camera, Photo Backgrounds, Props for Staging, Lights, Items to be Photographed)
- Edit Photographs (Computer, Camera, Blog Notebook – to reference image style guide)
- Classes (Computer, Class Notebook, Blog Notebook, Notepad, Writing Utensil)
- Declutter/Organize (Varies by Project)
- File, Scan, Shred, Recycle (Computer, Printer/Scanner, File/Scan Inbox, Shred Box, Recycle Box)
- Read (Current Book)
Now, let’s get to creating your office zones (finally)!
Determine Your Required Zones
Now, look at your grouped tasks and brainstorm some office zones. Make a list of the zones you come up with.
This doesn’t have to be perfect. You’ll likely tweak your zones as you work with them, so don’t spend too much time trying to choose the perfect zones.
Finally, think about your office or work space and determine the best possible location for each zone.
It makes sense to locate my scanning and filing zone near my printer, because my printer is the biggest component of that zone. And it’s bulky and heavy. I don’t want to have to move it!
Using my list from above, I need the following office zones:
- A yoga & goal review area for my Miracle Morning activities – MASTER BEDROOM (where I do yoga in the mornings)
- A computer work area – MY DESK
- A MOBILE photograph area – I take photos on my dining room table, because the light is best there, but I don’t want to keep my supplies in the dining room, so I need a separate place to store my photograph supplies that is easily moved back and forth from the storage area (probably my office) to the dining room.
- A scanning and filing area – NEAR THE PRINTER (because it the hardest piece to move and luckily enough, my file cabinet is beneath my printer)
- An information storage area (BOOKSHELVES) – for the books I refer to regularly
- In addition, I have a closet desk where I’ll craft and store my crafting supplies (CRAFT ZONE)
- I also need an office supply storage area…because #OfficeSupplyJunkie 😉
I have a few items that “travel.” For example, my phone and my PowerSheets.
Obviously, I keep my phone with me most of the time. I refer to my PowerSheets throughout the work day, but I also need them for my morning yoga/goal session.
I just take my phone and PowerSheets upstairs with me in the morning when I head back up to do yoga after my husband and kids leave. Then I bring them back down with me and keep them in the office, so that I can refer to them both during the work day.
Create Your Office Zones
Now for the fun part!
You know what zones you need, where you’d like them to be located, and what items you require in each one….
Let’s start moving things around!
You may find that you already have zones created, because you intuitively knew to locate like items together. You may need to relocate your zones or add supplies to your zones.
If you need a complete office overhaul, don’t panic. You can do it!
Lay out your plan, choose one or two steps to tackle first, and maybe give yourself some deadlines.
Whether you have a major overhaul to complete or if you’d just like to make a detailed plan, I have a printable project planner that might come in handy. Snag it HERE!
A Final Tip
PLEASE DON’T start tearing your office apart!
If you’re anything like me you’re super excited to get those zones set up and working for you.
It’s important to create your zones a little at a time or one at a time, so that you don’t end up with a bigger mess, more disorganization, and NO productivity.
Plan on working on one zone each day or each week, depending on your available free time.
A Note on Small Office Spaces
You can still create office zones even if you have a small office space.
Instead of areas of your office, your zones might be areas of your desk. This could include your drawers or the vertical space above your desk (i.e. shelves and the bins that you store on the shelves).
A word of caution: You’ll need to be very discerning with the number of supplies required for each office zone if you have a very small space. But it can be done, and you’ll be more organized and productive as a result of the time and effort.
Whew, that was a lot of work! But now you have all of the information you need to plan and DIY office zones and you can get to setting them up. This process takes a little time and effort, but you’ll get that time and effort back in spades by being more organized and productive.
Don’t forget to pin it!
Related Posts You Might Enjoy
If you found today’s post helpful, you might also like these related posts.
- How to Choose the Best Location for Your Home Office
- 6 Things to do on Sunday for the Best Work Week Ever
- Get Organized with a Tickler File
Thanks for hanging out with me today!