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“I Am The Most Disorganized Person On The Planet.” A Confession, By Dave Saunders

I know what I know. And I know what I don’t know. What I don’t know could fill the Pacific Ocean, but I have come to realize that in life, as in business, you have strengths and weaknesses. Not knowing things is a tremendous weakness. So, at Madison+Main we are all about learning new things. We send all of our employees through Dale Carnegie Training after they are onboarded. We encourage professional development opportunities and we generally have two internal training sessions every month that involves the entire team. On Tuesday this week, we invited Ayanna McMullen from Harmony Organizing to drop some knowledge bombs on the Madison+Main-iacs.

One thing I do not know is how to be organized. Have you ever seen my office? They say that a messy desk is a sign of a creative mind. If this is so, I am the most creative person on the planet. My desktop is a scattered, minefield of papers, pens, empty envelopes, crumpled paper pandemic masks, sunglasses, empty Chinese food containers, parking tickets, three-month-old magazines, pictures of my kids, assorted coffee mugs, and a calculator. Oh, and a really big cup of water. My doctor says to drink more water but I digress.

The best option for naming a new company is coming up with something clever and memorable. But if you can, keep it short and simple. Last fall, I looked through a directory of Volvo technicians to find a tune-up guy for my boat. After looking through 50 mechanics, I chose Oil In a Day’s Work. The owner, Aaron, was nice, professional, and courteous, so I hired him again on my trip back through Charleston this spring.

I do not want to give away any trade secrets here, but I will share one tip that I found really helpful. She advised the team to create a Task List the day before you start those tasks. Some team members use pen and paper, while others use digital tools. I have always tended to write random thoughts on scraps of paper and then lose them in the piles on my desk — or crumple them and toss them somewhere near the trash can. But Tuesday night I took Ayanna’s advice and Wednesday was one of the most productive days I’ve had in months. I woke up early, reviewed my Task List over coffee, took Gertie for a walk, and finished my work before 2 p.m. I celebrated my accomplishment by napping from 3 p.m. – 5 p.m.

In all seriousness, Ayanna had some great tips on how to improve organization and productivity and I highly recommend you speak to her about helping your team.