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Blog: Can We Have Some Order Here?
Living La Vida Cubicle (And Staying Organized In The Process)

Storage is at a premium when you work in a "cube," and it can be hard to stay organized when all you've got are four walls and a desk! There is no magic solution -- you just have to find ways to make the most of the available space. However, it's easy to keep your supplies and paper in order when you've got the right tools for your cubicle.

Surface Storage

Does your work space feel cramped and claustrophobic because of all the piles? You may not have room to hide them away, but you can create an organized home for those items that sit out in the open!  Vertical racks will hold files up off your desk -- look a stepped or "cascade" design, where files in the back are slightly higher than ones in the front so you can see every label. A set of sturdy bookends can corral your binders and reference guides, and upright magazine boxes allow you to organize catalogs and trade journals in less space, spines forward. Set up a few stacking trays and you've got an instant document sorter -- appropriate for blank paper, commonly used forms, incoming to-do's, and even ongoing long-term projects. And don't forget an open-topped cup for stray pens, pencils, scissors, and other supplies.

If worries about losing a piece of paper in your one overstuffed file drawer lead you to create piles on every available surface, try containing your stacks in a crate. Simply set up a series of open-topped file boxes filled with hanging folders -- one box per major category of information. Unlike a file drawer, crates allow you to see all your labels with one glance and immediately put your hands on the document you need -- no searching necessary. Color-coding the files and tabs to match the container will also make it easier for you to remember which document lives in which container, for both faster retrieval and speedier filing. And lining your crates up atop your credenza or along the far wall of your cubical will keep your office from being cluttered, while still keeping everything within easy reach.

Vertical Storage

Now it's time to look beyond the horizontal surface. Crates can also be turned on their side to provide stackable storage -- place one on top of the other (with the openings toward the front) and you've got a handy and customizable bookshelf. It's a great solution for storing small office equipment, reading/marketing materials, and bulk supplies in an organized and accessible fashion. And sometimes, the most convenient storage is hanging right in front of your face -- on your cubicle wall! Most cubicles are covered in a fabric that makes hanging items a snap -- but even those that aren't can accommodate an organizer that attaches via magnets or hooks over the top of the wall. These days, you can find a hanging version of almost anything that sits on your desk -- file racks, business card holders, CD racks, pencil cups, you name it. Hooks create a set home for keys, coats, umbrellas, and bags that might otherwise be thrown in a pile on the chair. You can also find a variety of specialty cubicle accessories designed specifically to attach to the wall of your work cell. And don't forget the value of having a bulletin or write-on/wipe-off board mounted within arm's reach -- for keeping upcoming to-do's, reference items, and reminders within line of sight!

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posted on: 1/20/2011 11:30:00 AM by Ramona Creel
category: General Organizing Tips

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Discuss This Post

by Kailee on 12/1/2011 9:39:15 PM:

That's not just logic. That's rlealy sensible.

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Can We Have Some Order Here?

by Ramona Creel

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About Ramona:

I have been a Professional Organizer for more than 10 years, I am a NAPO Golden Circle member, and I was the original founder of OnlineOrganizing. I have worked one-on-one with scores of clients and have trained dozens of newbie organizers as they got started in the industry. I provide both hands-on and virtual coaching to help clients improve their organizing skills and simplify their lives. I invite you to visit my website at http://www.RamonaCreel.com, and I challenge you to find one new idea that you can put into practice in your life, to help you become better organized, starting TODAY! I am passionate about coaching folks toward a more balanced, productive, and enjoyable life -- and I firmly believe that if I can do it, so can you!

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