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     Organizational Tips For The Road Warrior


Most organizational tips, lists, and how-to's discuss ways to organize your home, your office, or your home office. But what about organizational tips for those who keep an office in their CAR? My close friend Karen has just that -- an office in her car. Every time she puts more miles on the good old Henry Ford, she discovers a new and helpful tip to keep her MOBILE OFFICE as organized as her regular office. Here are just a few of her ideas for the well-organized and properly stocked car office:
PAPER, PAPER EVERYWHERE…NOT

Get a SEALABLE hanging file container. These typically cost about $10 and are available at your local office supply store or major discount chain. This container will allow you to keep papers organized and neat. Since you can CLOSE the organizer, your papers will stay in place should it tip over as you swerve to avoid that tractor-trailer that just drifted into your lane.
STOP! WAIT A MINUTE MR. POSTMAN

Having a roll of STAMPS and a small supply of different sized ENVELOPES in the car will save you valuable time. No need to stop at the Post Office every time you need to mail something while traveling. Just stuff and stamp those letters and correspondence after your mid-morning coffee break and find the nearest mailbox.
IDEAS NEVER COME WHEN YOU NEED THEM

Get one of those windshield NOTEPADS for your car. These are handy gadgets to have around when those great ideas pop into your head, or when you remember something from earlier in the day. While you're at a stoplight, or sitting in traffic, jot down your thoughts.
THE STEERING WHEEL JUST DOESN'T CUT IT

If you need a hard surface to write on but don't want to use the traditional clipboard, consider getting a LAP DESK. It can be placed either on your lap or on the passenger seat. After you're done using it, store it on the floor or under the passenger seat.
CONTAIN YOURSELF

Use a PENCIL BOX to contain loose items such as pens, pencils, your mileage log, receipts and stamps. Depending on the size of your pencil box, you can store it in your glove compartment or under your seat.
SALES CALL!

If you're in sales like my friend Karen, keep a well-stocked SALES BAG. The sales bag will include products or services that you offer, your price list, samples (if necessary), letters of recommendation, customer lists, testimonials and success stories, purchase and sales orders, contracts, agreements, a list of customer follow-up items. Some additional amenities for this sales bag might be Altoids (always greet your customer with "confidence"), Kleenex (never let them see you sweat), pens, notepaper and a calculator.
KEEP THOSE GERMS AT BAY

It's not always convenient to stop and WASH your hands when you get food from the drive-thru. So keep the germs at bay, get a small bottle of Purel or a box of antiseptic WIPES for the car. These should stay in the armrest of your car or the glove compartment for easy access.
REACH OUT AND TOUCH SOMEONE

This day and age, it's tough to stay ahead of the competition unless you are WIRELESS. A car allows you to stay connected to your customers. If a car phone is not available, CALLING CARDS and voice mail are good alternatives. If your business takes you on interstates, frequent truck stops. These usually have great phone facilities to conduct your business.
THESE ARE A FEW OF MY FAVORITE THINGS

Keep favorite pictures of loved ones on the back of the sun visor. When you are having a bad day or just need some CHEERING up, these are just the cure.
A KID AT HEART

Make sure you have something FUN in your car to help keep you motivated. Just a few things like a camera, a journal, a good book, some bubbles, and a ball can help you enjoy well-deserved downtime during a long day on the road. A "toy box" filled with these items can be kept in the trunk for those times when you have a few minutes to spare and just need to play.
IN CASE OF AN EMERGENCY

No car should be without an EMERGENCY KIT, especially if you spend a good amount of time traveling and working on the road. Contact your local AUTO CLUB representative for assistance with an emergency kit.
ARE YOU PREPARED?

Next time you're on your way to a sales call or a client consultation, take INVENTORY. Is your car office equipped with the right items to make you more productive and more efficient? Use the list above to help you decide.

 

Donna is a writer, author, publisher, and mother. She is the president of IRIE Publishing. Donna is author of "The Woman's Guide to Self-Publishing" and the "Organize Your Books in 6 Easy Steps" series. Visit her website at www.IRIE-Publishing.com or contact her at .


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