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Spring Cleaning

Have you done your spring cleaning yet? I’m diving headlong into this annual rite of passage both at home and at the office.

I have a bit of a reputation as being obsessed with order. At work (because I sincerely doubt if you care how I clean my closets at home), I think about what I can do to streamline operations and generally freshen things up. Here are a few cleaning methods I’ve learned:

Declutter. I heard that the average worker spends more than two hours a week looking for stuff because his or her work area is disorganized. So start by cleaning up your desk, computer, files and office. On a larger scale, consider cleaning up obsolete inventory and equipment that may be clogging your company’s progress. Also, take a look at the policies and procedures (at Clearfield we don’t have procedures, only practices, but that’s another story) that are no longer bringing value.

Check your tool chest. Are all your tools in working order? Our efficiency is directly linked to the tools at our disposal. It may be time to upgrade your software or invest in professional development for yourself or key employees. This can be as simple as having a comfortable chair to work in. (We just bought new chairs for the Clearfield production floor!)

Sometimes it takes more than paint. Slapping a new coat of paint on an old problem may give the allusion that it’s fresh and functional. But that thin veneer could just be disguising the ugly truth. It may be time to go deeper and fix the root of that (personnel, service or product) problem.

Plant those seeds. Now is the time to think about new growth. Whether it’s hiring a few college grads that could grow into your company’s next leaders or germinating some new ideas in product development, spring is the time to plant those seeds.

Spring cleaning is even more important when “you are busting at the seams” like we’ve been at Clearfield. Over the winter, we found that we just couldn’t make our existing space work for us, so April 1st we increased the floor space of our manufacturing/warehouse operation by 35%. Now, we’ll have more room – and more areas to clean!

Whatever you do, just do something. You’ll be surprised at how invigorating it is to get a clean start!