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Paperless, here we go…

It’s January. Time for a new big idea.

I refuse to make resolutions in the New Year. They end up being promises that I just can’t keep.

But big ideas are projects. And a project is something that I can finish.

My big idea for 2016: Paperless.

Yes, paperless. After years of flip flopping between paper and digital, I am going all in on digital.

Why?

Picture two people at a meeting.

Person one is the epitome of organization. She is a true Renaissance Woman of order. Her binder is fully tabbed. Her calendar is colour-coded by topic. She effortlessly pulls up the information she needs to cut through red tape. She is a force to be reckoned with.

Person two is me. A true buffoon of personal organization. I have no binder, just a pile of paper I printed at the last minute. My calendar is jammed full and still missing important events. When I need to go into full information combat, I can’t find the ammo. I am cannon fodder in the information age.

Flip Flopping

Every year or two I change my system. I look at the woman with the tabbed binder in awe. I run to the office supply shop, buy a truckload of binders and tabs, and vow to always have all of the necessary information at my fingertips. I create meeting note forms and project folders. I create to-do lists on fancy new legal pads. I purchase overpriced notebooks to document all of my good ideas.

All for naught.

Within months I have a mess. Information is scattered everywhere. Some digital. Some paper.  Some missing. My notes are useless. My to-do list is incomplete. My calendar is overflowing.  And I never seem to have the information that I need.

So Why Digital?

This year I have decided to get organized. And do it digital.

Why digital? Paper is heavy. And hard to share. And hard to carry around in volume. And takes up too much space in my tiny office.

As a technologist, it is my job to make sure that information technology helps our clients become stronger, powerful, and competitive. Digital is my way of life. So, as they say, one must eat one’s own dog food.

And the emerging toolsets and cloud systems should offer me tremendous opportunity to get organized. There must be big advantages over paper.

The promise of the paperless office has been around since the dawn of the microprocessor. There must be people who are living that promise. I just don’t know any personally. There seems to be paper everywhere.

Get’er Going

So January marks my conversion to 100% digital life content.

In the coming weeks, I will share my thoughts on the problems that I need to figure out….

  1. What is my information inventory? What information do I need, where do I get it, and how do I use it?
  2. What tools are available to solve the problems? How many system will I need and how do I best use the toolkit?
  3. How do I make it all work seamlessly, easily, and affordably.

I aspire to be an information ninja. And this year I am going to do it without paper.

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