Thursday, October 18, 2007

why my filing system makes me a truly valuable employee

My desk tends to end up covered in piles of paper. While these are, IMHO, filed in order, known best to myself, the outsider could be mistaken in suggesting a slightly disorganised life.

In July, one of my employers offered me an inflation adjusted payrise. I was informed of this by letter, and invited to accept this generous offer by signing and returning the said paperwork. Apparently the letter informed me that upon reciept of my signature, the pay rise would be implemented.

Such a piece of paper seemed a minor detail at the time, as I was just back from a 3 week teaching journey, and there were things like family and church and lecturing to attend to. The letter was duly filed in the “to action pile”. During the next weeks (OK, months actually), other things have occupied my attention. Important things IMHO, like family and church and lecturing.

Needless to say that my excellent filing system has served me well, as more and more paper has been quietly filed in my “to action pile.”

Today a window of time allows me to attend to this pile. To my delight, my filing system has worked and the said bit of paper has been recovered, signed and sent.

Some might consider this filing system evidence of a disorganised mind. But the perceptive will merely note that the paper was always safely filed. Further, it was able to be retrieved when needed, which is surely the test of any filing system. Thirdly, my filing system has saved the employer nearly 4.5 months of a pay increase. Surely this should enable me to win the “truly valuable employee” of the year award.

(But please God, may I not have to sign for this award before receiving it, Amen).

Posted by steve at 10:30 AM


  1. 🙂 xx

    Comment by lynne — October 18, 2007 @ 10:39 am

  2. Delighted to find someone else who uses the same (effective) filing system!?

    Comment by Jaybee — October 18, 2007 @ 11:37 am

  3. We call this “vertical garages” i.e. piles of paper parked carefully. It we put things “away safely” we can’t find them. Leave them in the vertical garages and we know exactly where they are…..well the general location anyway.

    Enjoy the payrise:-)

    Comment by Chappie — October 18, 2007 @ 11:51 am

  4. You could always write your employer a letter informing them that should they feel the occassion to give you a pay increase in the future that they are free to do so and don’t need to wait for any letters of acknowledgement!

    Comment by Andrew — October 18, 2007 @ 12:10 pm

  5. I like the idea that we all spend about the same amount of time on filing. Some of us spend the time when we put things into the ‘system’, but others (clearly you being one of them as myself) only spend the time when we need to take things out of the ‘filing system’.
    Sometimes, I never even need to take anything out-in which case I really do have the last laugh!!

    Comment by Ian — October 19, 2007 @ 1:55 am

  6. I have always operated on this highly effective system, which sometimes takes up some floor space. It has been known as the “Linear Integrated Filing System”. That isthe further down the pile you go the older it is.

    Comment by Graham Doel — October 19, 2007 @ 9:15 pm

  7. Imants Tillers frequently exhibits his paintings in this manner. His paintings are large and painted over a series of individual canvasses which are then either mounted on a wall or sometimes he chooses to just exhibit them as stacks…?!

    Comment by Ceejay — October 23, 2007 @ 9:41 pm

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