We are now a month into 2016, and while a lot of resolutions have been made, we know that it is difficult to keep them as the year goes on. January is the proving ground for turning great end-of-year ideas into year-long habits, but if you have not quite made it to the gym three times a week or started cooking healthfully at home every night, do not despair. February is as good a time as any to re-up your good intentions and getting organized at work is a great place to start.
Here are three habits joint use professionals can adopt to kick off a new year of infrastructure asset management just right.
A De-cluttered Workspace
One of the biggest books of 2015, Marie Kondo’s Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up was nothing short of a revolution for people seeking a little visual calm—and mental space—in their lives. While Kondo’s advice focuses more on de-cluttering one’s home life, her newest book, Spark Joy: An Illustrated Master Class on the Art of Organizing and Tidying Up offers specific, practical advice applicable to any space. If you read the first book and wondered if you should be asking yourself if the stapler on your desk "sparks joy," the newest publication should help. Among other tips, Kondo reveals that some things (screwdrivers, for example) are simply needed in modern life, no matter how they make you feel. You thank them for their usefulness. If they are not useful, they should go. Look around: What can disappear from your workspace?
A Streamlined Digital Life
We all multi-task. The temptation to do ten things at once is an unavoidable side effect of the digital age, right? Maybe not. WYNC podcast Note to Self has made February an experiment in digital mindfulness that could help you use your gadgets for good rather than for task-switching, distracting evil. They call it Infomagical, and their plan is to turn "all your information portals into overload-fighting machines." Even better, the initiative is set up like a game with which you can play along. Simply sign up (or just follow along) at their site and start streamlining your screen time. The first activities start this week. How can you find more focus day-to-day?
Automation of Everything Else
Data entry is a legitimate time destroyer. Fortunately, things like automatic billpay and free, online budgeting software that balances your checkbook without you even needing to enter one decimal point make handling life’s repetitive tasks relatively easy. But what about at work? Part of the job of joint use and infrastructure asset management is information entry—contract details, pole transfer requests, work orders to detach, and so on—often multiple pieces of information that must be entered separately into multiple software programs and systems. GIS. Work management. Billing.
"If you miss one permit, transfer or pole replacement in one place, you miss it in five other systems," says Alden rep Jacob Harrison. Fortunately, this too can be automated. Using an integrated joint use communication system like Alden’s Notify can make automation of pole information across systems seamless. With this type of help, the age of hand-entered information is gone—saving time, reducing error, and saving your energy for more important tasks. How can you take the repetitive stress out of your day, week, or month?
It’s a new year. Here’s to a new you on the job.