The Cleanup After

Colorful Papers

Yesterday I wrote about not finishing what we started and the inefficiency and stress that come with it.

Today I’m writing about a step that I often ignore after I’m done with a project. It is the subsequent cleanup of papers, files, computer documents and notes. If this doesn’t get sorted out right away, it will turn into another unfinished project.

The after cleanup is usually pushed back because there is no sense of urgency in getting it done. We are relieved to have finished the important part, so we can’t wait to move on to the next thing.

I finished the corporate income tax for 2008 but I still need to organize and archive all the documents (mostly computer files). This would also be the best time to plan for next year’s taxes while everything is still fresh. I intend to do this tomorrow as a top priority, otherwise it won’t get done.

In rethinking how to work on a project, the following steps can be done to ensure all the details are included:

  • Determine what the project is and its purpose.
  • List all the steps to be done.
  • Add the cleanup of all documents and files as a step.
  • If this is a recurring project (such as annual taxes), make a list of all the important steps for next year and make sure it is placed where you will find it.

The devil is in the details and the details should always include the final cleanup before we can bid the project farewell.

Happy cleanup!