Working in an office is not quite as glamorous as it might sound. Although compared to digging ditches, pushing paper sounds downright highfalutin. No matter what your profession is, you’ll always perform your best when you’re using the right tools.
In my home office I have five go-to office supplies that I cannot live without.
1. Personal organizer/weekly planner
Life seems to get busier and busier as each year passes. Not only are there deadlines and projects at work but if you have kids (or a social life) there are events and activities to keep track of at home as well. I like the BusyBodyBook Personal and Family Grid Organizer.
Each two-page spread provides a page on the left to list projects, tasks, to-do lists, phone numbers, etc. as well as a page on the right with five side-by-side columns which allows you to track a variety of projects and schedules. The columns are useful if you are coordinating schedules between family members or co-workers as it allows you to dedicate one column to one person.
The columns work well for itemizing professional tasks as well as personal projects. I know there are a myriad of websites where you can keep a virtual calendar, but in this regard, I guess I’m old school.
2. Sharpie® Fine Point Permanent Markers
I like making lists with check boxes so I can add a check mark once I’ve completed my task. Yes, you could use a pencil or a ballpoint pen, but why not add some pizazz to your lists? With a pack of colorful fine point Sharpies you can assign colors to each project, person or task. We don’t live in a black and white world, so why should you work in one?
Bonus tip: If your boss is getting you down you can assign a color to his tasks and then take delight in blotting him his tasks out in red ink.
3. OXO Good Grips™ Large Magnetic Clips
Chances are good you have a metal file cabinet in your office. These large magnetic clips are perfect for holding calendars, notes or user manuals within reach on the side of the cabinet.
At home they do double duty by taming the influx of school work. Just clip together all of those permission slips, homework sheets and artwork and stick it to the front of the fridge.
Bonus tip: If the exterior doors on your house are made of painted steel you can use these clips to hang reminder notes that you will see before you leave the house.
4. Post-it® Pop-Up Note Dispenser
Every day I seem to jot down random notes. When I use post-it notes I can transfer the information to my planner without having to re-write it. But best of all, the note dispenser is weighted so I can grab a post-it — with one hand — when I need it. So for all of those times when I’m multi-tasking on the phone and I need a slip of paper I can easily grab it. Plus the dispenser comes in a variety of designs so it adds a bit of color to my workspace.
5. Wire Mesh 5-Pocket Wall File
Real estate is always at a premium whether your talking about brick and mortar buildings or open space on your desktop. And while metal file cabinets are a must, but getting to oft-used information can be a hassle if it’s filed away. This hanging wall file allows you to temporarily file something away without forgetting about it.
It allows you to keep your work space clear and open while providing quick access to the information you need on a regular basis.
Bonus tip: You can use those handy magnetic clips up there to temporarily hang notes on the front of the file since it’s made of wire mesh.
What are your essential office tools that you couldn’t live without?
Author Bio: Cardiogirl is a freelance writer who blogs Monday through Friday at Cardiogirl: 19% body fat 100% fun.