My New System

Well, I start my new job in one week and I have developed a new system to help me be more productive.

Calendar. I am switching back to my a Classic two-page-per-month calendar instead of the Pocket calendar I've been using here. However, I may be going digital since my new employer likes the staff to keep their calendar on Outlook. A PDA purchase may be in my future. Keeping two calendars is a recipe for disaster. I will also have an administrative assistant that could keep my calendar. I just don't know if I'm ready to let someone else do that, though.

Tabs within binder. Since I will have seven direct reports, they each will have their own tab in my binder for "future agenda" items that will need to be captured. My supervisor also gets a tab, as well as a couple other committees I will be working with.

Compass Notepad. FC makes these great Classic size notepads that are pre-drilled with 7 holes. I will use these extensively.

Circa PDA. I love my new circa pda, and can't imagine not having one. I keep projects and To Do's in it, along with some blank cards for capture.

Shirt Pocket Briefcase. Now that warmer temperatures are returning, I have been wearing shirts that actually have pockets. I carry my pocket briefcase around instead of my pocket Moleskine Cahiers now. I love it. If I need to transfer a card to my circa pda, I simply punch it with my new portable circa punch.

File transport. I love my zipper folio pad with large gusseted pocket for files. It also has a slash pocket on the outside for carrying misc. papers.

Files. The backbone of my system. I don't know if my new employer has a label maker. If not, I will buy one. I like the look of printed labels on manila file folders.

That's where my head is


Syndicate content

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

Good to hear!

It sounds like you are ready. Glad to hear that your circa punch is coming in handy ... I wish you all the best at your new gig.

my artwork | my blog

Dymo labelers

For file folder labels, I use - and love - the Dymo labelers, like here:

One of several models of Dymo labelers

I also have the regular Brother labelers (the ones that use coated tape) and use them a lot, but prefer the Dymo labels for file folders. Very easy to read and since I use the regular address labels, more space for information on what's inside the folder.

(I did try the regular file folder label size, which they offer, but I prefer the regular address labels for that task.)

Congrats on the new job! That's always exciting. :)


Congratulations on the new job

Bob wrote - However, I may be going digital since my new employer likes the staff to keep their calendar on Outlook. A PDA purchase may be in my future. Keeping two calendars is a recipe for disaster. I will also have an administrative assistant that could keep my calendar. I just don't know if I'm ready to let someone else do that, though.

I also work for an employer who insists on staff using Outlook for appointments.

You can keep appointments hidden on Outlook by marking them Private and setting your assistant's profile so they can't view your private appointments. At least that way you can keep your non-work items or any sensitive items out of your assistant's view

Outlook will print the calendar on whatever paper size you need, so it can produce the calendar pages for your planner. It just takes a bit of fiddling with the page setup.

Paper planning with outlook has worked for me. For work, I simply print off my weekly calender on A4 paper and fold it to fit into my small moleskine notebook. I keep my out-of-work-hours personal appointments in my fobster, and I only have to worry about combining the calendars if work commitments run into my personal time or I have a personal commitment in work hours.

Why use Circa PDA *and* shirt pocket briefcase?


First of all, congrats on the new job!!!

Now, a question from a relative newbie, who is still trying to wean herself off her (dysfunctional) PDA...

Why use both a shirt pocket briefcase and a circa PDA? If you have blank pages in the latter for capture, why not just keep the circa PDA in your shirt pocket, and have fewer places for items to be?


Good Question

After just one day on the job, it is very apparent that my new system will require some tweaking.

With regard to the circa pda vs. shirt pocket briefcase question, I tried both on my first day. The circa pda is just a bit too bulky to carry in my shirt pocket, plus it doesn't look nearly as classy as my shirt pocket briefcase. I know I could buy a leather circa pda cover, but I'm not going to.

The circa pda is going to reside on my desk, while the shirt pocket briefcase will remain in my shirt pocket. When someone stops me in the hall with a suggestion, I will simply whip it out and jot a quick note.

I made a rather cool discovery. The circa pda holes line up nicely with the top three holes in my classic binder. I can punch a card, or slip of paper and keep it in my binder. Or move something from my circa pda to my binder.
Or vice versa.


Cool Discovery...

I made a rather cool discovery

You betcha.
THIS is, I believe, one of the best things about disc binding. Anything fits into anything. You can have a Letter/A4 size binder and put index cards and Classic/A5 sheets in it as well -- even down to business cards.
"I think the surest sign that there is intelligent life out there in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us." (Calvin and Hobbes/Bill Waterson)


I believe Bob's classic binder is a Covey... which makes it even more of plus :D

my artwork | my blog

Still Tweaking

I've been on the new job two weeks now, and I've made some "system" decisions.

Classic Binder - I've given up on paper calendaring completely now. Writing appointments there and in Outlook is too confusing. My calendar changes daily, sometimes almost hourly. I'm using my binder as my meeting planner. Each of my staff has their own tab, and that's where I write down agenda items, waiting for's, etc.

Circa PDA - Its very cool. My employer gave me one of those large zippered leather three ring binders with a tabbing system specific to the type of work I do. One of the pockets is made to hold a pda, and my circa pda fits nicely inside of it. I'm using this for To Do lists, and as a "reminder" pad.

PDA - Next week I'm ordering an iPAQ to sync up with my Outlook. Apparently Palm products won't sync up properly with our computer system. That's ok, the iPAQ is really cool. I can't wait to get it, so I can take my email with me to read later. I get a LOT of email now.

That's where my system is at right now. It will probably change a few more times before I feel completely comfortable.


its great to hear!

Sounds like you are settling in nicely :)

Feel free to drop me an email if you get bored :D

my artwork | my blog