From Chaos to Clarity – How being more organised can help you survive and thrive
Hello food safety friends,
If you are reading this Blog there is a 99.99% chance that you are working in the food industry. This means that you know the challenges that we all face on a daily basis. Between audits, meetings, trainings, HACCP reviews, followed by more audits, more meetings, etc. Life is a constant juggle. What is this work-life balance people are speaking of?
Life has taught me that when chaos sets in, one of two things happen; 1. The chaos continues to cause more chaos, or 2. You take control of the situation and turn things around. I’ve tried both options and, believe me, number one is never a good option.
Today I am going to share some tips about how to be more organized and how to use your organisation skills to trump chaos. I certainly would not call myself an expert in this field – I am a self-confessed procrastinator. I don’t follow chaos, chaos follows me…
- If you don’t know how to prioritize, learn how! The power of prioritization is phenomenal. There’s a lot of advice out there on the World Wide Web to help you with this.
- Use your calendar to schedule all routine tasks like meetings, sensory evaluations, product releases – basically daily, weekly, monthly activities that happen on a routine basis. Then, use your calendar to schedule adhoc activities including project deadlines. When these invites or actions pop up in your inbox, schedule them immediately. Having a bird’s eye view of your day/week/month will help you plan and prioritize (see point 1 above).
- Organize your work space. I know this sounds like a terrible waste of time (which is a precious resource) but decluttering your work space makes you more productive. Chaos is born from chaos, so get organised and tidy up your space.
- Schedule 15 minutes per day (preferably at the end of the day) to review your calendar and tasks. What has been done? What hasn’t been done? What is urgent? Take a moment to look at what needs to happen tomorrow too. Walking into your office knowing what needs to be done, puts you in charge.
- Manage your e-mails by setting time aside to go through that nasty inbox. Research has shown that focused time to work through your emails is more effective than taking 5 minutes here and there throughout the day. The time and energy taken to switch between tasks is better utilized on getting those tasks ticked off.
- Embrace technology and use your mobile phone and supplementary apps to set reminders, track your progress and communicate with your team. We are living in a digital era, so use the tools at your disposal!
- Develop a no-nonsense attitude. Start meetings on time and arrive on time if you are not the host. Don’t get sucked into time-wasting banter – especially if you have a hectic schedule. Stick to the meeting agenda. There’s no need to be stuck up or rude. You can smile, greet and chat but make sure you get moving on with the meeting or you may regret it.
March has been a fabulous month. We’ve celebrated our 18th birthday in style by dishing out Mugg & Bean vouchers – here are the lucky winners:
Nicky Mathebula & Welheminah Tswalane Mojapelo
Mokopu Virginia Matlou & Sizakele Priscilla Sibanyoni
Mary-Anne Boucher & Chantelle Du Toit
Ncebakazi Gcinisa & Zuko Bomvana
We’ve also launched a brand new training course – Implementation of GlobalG.A.P. IFA – Fruits & Vegetables version 6. There’s never a dull moment but thanks to our sterling back office support team, we are always on top of our game. Truth be told, some of us are more organised than others…
If you want to experience passion, service excellence and technical expertise unlike you have experienced before, you absolutely must register to attend one (or a few) of our courses. We also offer all of our training courses onsite. Email email@example.com for more information or pop over to our website.
Until next month…
From the Food Bites Team.