Trying to manage a law firm when things are disorganized is a challenge many attorneys don’t even consider. They’re so busy dealing with so many other aspects of their work, they fail to see the improvements that are possible when you invest in organizing. Organizing your workspace improves everything from communication to motivation to successful marketing for attorneys.
How can getting organized help your firm achieve more success?
You never really finish organizing. You’ll need to implement systems that keep your environment manageable and suit your firm’s needs.
But before you can implement long-term systems for organizing, you first need to get your current situation under control. Depending on your situation, this could mean dedicating several hours or days to tackling your current mess. Once this project is complete, you’ll be able to come up with a long-term plan that keeps things in order.
Where Should You Start with Organizing?
In most cases, you’ll want to focus on your immediate workspace. Clear the clutter here first. This includes your desk, as well as your computer and other electronic devices. If it’s within arm’s reach right now, you’ll want to organize it first.
Once that’s done, your mind has room to breathe and you can design a strategy for the other spaces. Many people find it helpful to create zones. This way you can organize in chunks and not feel as overwhelmed as you would if you tried to tackle everything in one go.
There are several different approaches to organizing. The KonMari Method is one version, but it’s not your only option. Don’t worry about what’s “right” or “wrong” for other people. Try a few different methods until you find what works for you and your firm and then apply it to the various areas that need organizing in your office.
In addition to the approach you take to organizing, you’ll also want to give some thought to the tools you’ll use. Tools include everything from file folders to digital tools you use for client communication and time management. If something you’re currently using doesn’t work, get rid of it. Then spend time researching your options and invest in tools suited to the needs of your office.
Minimize Distractions While You Focus on Organization
It’s also important to avoid distractions while you focus on organization. Set aside time when you don’t need to worry about client issues or other work just to deal with organizing. It’s time well-spent and an investment that will pay off for years to come.
Remember, organizing your physical and electronic environment helps you better manage your time. Like most attorneys, your workdays are likely high-stress with a lot of bouncing from issue to issue. Keeping things organized and having the ability to prioritize things without having to start from scratch with everything saves you time and keeps things streamlined. It also helps you focus on marketing for attorneys and other things to help you grow your firm.
Understand the Impact of Organizing
Organizing your workspace also improves communication. Clear and open communication is critical to the success of your firm. Miscommunications make your work more difficult, put you at risk of losing clients, and in worst-case scenarios, put your firm at risk of malpractice. The more you can do to avoid mistakes and miscommunication the better. Organized, structured communication helps you build client trust. Over time, it gives you a solid foundation on which to build your firm’s success.
In addition to improving communication, getting organized positively impacts your mental health and the mental health of everyone you work with. Everyone in your firm will feel better about an organized, clutter-free workspace.
The benefits of organizing are backed by science. Cluttered, disorganized workspaces negatively impact productivity. Messes interfere with our ability to focus and make us feel heavy and unmotivated. You might think you’re able to perform just as well in disorganization as you would otherwise, but the truth is it’s a significant source of stress in our lives.
Organizing your firm means you’ll have more time to invest in things to help you grow, like marketing for attorneys.
Organizing Improves Marketing for Attorneys
Once your physical workspaces are clutter-free, you can apply what you’ve learned about organizing to your online presence. If it’s been a while since you’ve ordered your social media, your website, or any other aspects of your firm online, you’ll want to make that a part of your organizing project.
Whether you’ve been struggling for a while and you’re overwhelmed with the idea of organizing your firm or you have small areas of disorganization and you want to get a handle on them, now is the time. Once you’ve taken care of these projects, you’ll be able to move on to things you’ve been putting off like implementing new marketing strategies, updating your website, or expanding your firm.