I just printed out tons of weekly calendars in preparation of a huge project I have coming up. It's actually my first major project of my career. I am ready to show out to my boss. The key to this project is going to be organization and documentation. I am such a manager and planner, this is like cocaine to me.
These are some of my favorite tricks for staying organized.
1. Find a calendar that best suits your task
Daily calendars are great for people who want to organize EVERY single thing. However, I am mainly wanting to keep track of this individual project. It's not like I will have back to back to back meetings every day.
2. If it's not moving, label it!
I cannot count the number of times a sticky note or label saved my life. When I have a million copies of bills, contracts, and email chains printed out on my desk I can honestly loose track of what pertains to what. Binders and hanging files are my favorite way to keep all of my papers and documents looking neat, and I am able to label them accordingly (I mean who doesn't get excited about being able to color code stuff). I can't stand when people expect everyone else to know what is what without any form of label. My OCD spidey sense just can't handle it.
4. Be Specific
In my (strange, wacky) world, there is no such thing as too much detail. You never know when something so trivial can in fact save your ass. Write down the specifics: What's due, How it is expect, Who you spoke to, what you spoke about, and dates things occured. These are great ways to be accountable for what you've done, and to make sure you don't let things slip between the cracks.
3. Stick to the plan!
I, myself, am terrible at this. I will start with the best intentions and the most awesome plans in the world on how to better manage projects, and by the time I am nearing completion, those plans are long since abandoned. I start with a great planner, folder, dividers, and calendar, but finish with a jumbled pile of sticky notes. So about 70% of the way through, I am so unorganized and flying by the seat of my pants. My goal for the project I am about to embark on, is to complete everything and have 100% documentation from start to finish.