Streamlining…

The money, the lifestyle or the balance?The money, the lifestyle or the balance?

Jessie J sings, “It’s not about the money, money, money.” She sings “Forget about the price tag.” Should we? What are we about? The money, the lifestyle, or the balance?

Amanda was wondering the same thing when in 2009 the GFC hit and she was made redundant amongst her thousands of other colleagues from a great multinational corporate company. A balanced job with her boss always making sure her lifestyle and work were in sync.
So what to do? Look around again for the “right” balance? Not possible. Start her own business? Yes! So the research began.

Amanda comes across AAPO “Australasian Association of Professional Organisers”? What is this you ask? What is a Professional Organiser? Maybe someone that can put your life back in balance.

So to start a small business where do you go and who do you ask?  So Amanda sees her accountant and explains what she would like to do. Make work places more efficient. More Streamlined. So the administrative processes and systems work seamlessly and without thought. So everyone is in sync and saves time every day. Impossible? Not entirely. A professionally organised approach. Can this be achieved in life too? A balance?

So Amanda says to her accountant that she would like to Professionally Organise offices. They take a tour around his office and she immediately starts to realise how much they might need her organising skills. After 20 years in administrative roles these things are plain to see. The messy bookshelf makes the office look cluttered, not to mention the stationery that might fall on someone’s head. Oh, an OHS nightmare!

The phone starts ringing and is left unanswered because the receptionist is busy. Where is the process? There is 16 staff in the office. We continue on our tour and we see 10 old filing cabinets full of client and office files. What potential there is for this office to be efficient & Streamlined. And then we see it. The desk from hell! Well, Amanda’s professionally organised Hell! It is full of files, papers, coffee cups, books, financial magazines, spreadsheet printouts and more. How can they find anything? Amanda’s mind starts working overtime and starts to wonder up and down the aisles of her favourite stationery shop finding possibilities of how she could streamline this desk. Oh the systems she could put in place to manage this chaos. Imagine the money this company could save if their employees were professionally organised.

The employees we walk past look up from their work with glazed and questioning looks on their faces. Amanda’s accountant explains a little while later that he has not had time to setup that team meeting he has been meaning to get to. The employees are lacking in communication. There is low morale. The phone isn’t always answered because they need more administrative staff. He says there is no time. He is mopping up fires for clients that are yelling at him to help. He is overwhelmed and working ridiculous hours to try to get everything done.

First thing to look at is the Business Owner’s own time management. He needs to plan his day/week/projects. He needs to delegate and train his staff to handle the important calls from the clients so he can manage the business and look at the strategic growth. Where is he going in the next 12 months, 5 years? What does he need to get there?

Over the coming months Amanda sits with each and every one of the staff members and teaches them to manage their time and delegate effectively. She also shows them ways to organise their desk so they can find things quickly. The office is cleaned up with easy but effective tricks and a new lateral filing system is installed. The old filing cabinets are given away to charity and new cupboards built. The kitchen is updated and the reception area is given a new lease of life as well.

Now when a client rings this office to get accounting advice the phone is answered in an efficient and professional way and all calls are attended to in a timely manner. Processes are put in place to ensure this happens every time.

In a nutshell the office is efficient, streamlined, systems work seamlessly and without thought. Amanda has brought balance to the office. The business owner can now go home at night and spend time with his family because he has put systems in place so he does not have to work such long hours. Ah, balance.

What is it about? The money, the lifestyle or maybe the balance?  A professionally organised approach is brought in and balance can be achieved.