I’m one of those people who loves stationery shops.
There’s not much better than a really heavy sketch pad and a 4B pencil.
Or a fountain pen, freshly filled with ink.
I love sketching in biro too – there’s nothing else like it.
Notepads, pens, card. It’s fantastic stuff.
It’s also really simple and understandable.
No surprise that the most used internet application is email – because it mimics the way a paper letter works – and it’s still the best way to get in touch with someone today, despite the myriad of alternatives.
When getting your business organised, using something physical is often the very best first step.
Go to any office – how many people have their computer monitor covered in post it notes.
How many people have a whiteboard on the wall with the plan for the next few months – or their sales figures.
This is great.
It’s better to have a plan than have none.
Starting out you need to get organised as quickly and cheaply as possible.
But there comes a point when you need to move on.
While I love paper, I love fountain pens, I love notebooks, I also have a real fear around them.
What happens when I lose it?
So much important information. My to do lists, my detailed notes on how a particular project needs to work out. My diary for the next few weeks.
It would be so easy to leave it on a train. Or spill tea all over it. Or have it fall out of my bag.
And then I’d be screwed.
At one place I used to work, we had a giant whiteboard, listing out all the tasks we had for our variety of projects. Each one was placed exactly where it needed to be, so the right team knew what they had to do next. So we knew when it was due for completion. Our entire work schedule for the next few months.
At the time, we were working in a Portakabin, as we had outgrown our main office. The door for the cabin was annoying and hard to open. So you sort of had to kick it to get it open.
One day, someone came in, kicked it open, just as a gust of wind blew outside. The wind caught inside the cabin and blew half the post-its off the board and on to the floor.
In a fraction of a second, our plans for the next month were just ruined.
It was only a small issue. We guessed at where everything belonged and were back to normal in quarter of an hour.
But it’s a reminder that there comes a point where paper won’t do the job you need it to. Even worse if we were spread across multiple offices.
One advantage of “cloud” systems (which basically means that it’s someone else’s responsibility to look after it) is the data is backed up, it’s replicated and it’s accessible wherever you are.
Are you getting to the stage where it’s something you need to think about? If so, I’m happy to advise – click here to arrange a call-back at a time that suits you.
Photo by Daria Nepriakhina on Unsplash