Let’s face it, everyone would like to have less paper in their lives and many people are trying really hard to limit paper. If you are trying to greatly reduce the paper in your business and personal life, we think that is a great idea. However, if you are like most people, you will find that you can only take going paperless so far and you will still end up with quite a bit of paper – for this you should use The Paper Tiger software.
As we mentioned in a previous newsletter, with paper you only have 5 choices to deal with paper: TOSS IT in the trash (toss as much as you can), STACK IT (all that stuff on your desk), FILE IT alphabetically (the old fashioned way using abc’s and the file cabinet), SCAN IT (very tedious and time consuming) or INDEX IT (use The Paper Tiger software to index your paper files).
However, one of the best ways to get yourself better organized is to eliminate as much paper as you can upfront (i.e. don’t get it in the first place). If you want to get rid of as much paper as possible, here are a few ideas to consider:
Emailing - if at all possible, scan your paper documents into a computer and email them to your recipient rather than using a fax machine. If you do this, you are keeping a copy for yourself and reducing the paper on the other side. Your recipients will thank you for doing this!
Postal Mail - use an online service such as DMAchoice to take your name off direct marketing mailing lists. It is also not a bad idea to remove your name from telemarketing call lists at the same time.
Catalogs - use an online service such as Mailstopper to take your name off catalog marketing mailing lists.
Pay Online - pay bills and receive statements online. This eliminates quite a bit of paper. However, make sure you have a good electronic copy of the statements on your computer, in case your bank or other vendor decides to remove old statements. You can usually download a copy of all statements in .pdf format.
Digital Lists - reach for your iPhone, iPod Touch, Netbook or other such digital device before using paper to write down notes. There is great software available to help you keep organized and stay on top of your lists (free one at gmail tasks – Google). There is even a system available where you can call in and the system convert your voice to text called Jott.
PDFs - not everything needs to be printed to paper. You can save trees and laser toner/ink by simply printing documents to .pdf format and saving them on your computer. The bigger question is do you really need to save the document at all?
Scanning - scanning allows you to convert paper files into digital format. This can work out quite well for you and can make you feel “really organized”. There are many good choices in the market including The Neat Company. However, realize the pitfalls – scanning can consume quite a bit of time, some documents do not lend themselves to scanning and computers can and do break, so be sure and have a “bulletproof” local and off-site backup system or you could lose everything with a computer malfunction or a virus/database corruption error. You could even use The Paper Tiger to organize the physical documents that have been scanned, if you are worried about tossing the paper and later having a total loss situation due to a computer malfunction.
Paper - believe it or not, even if you did everything above, you would still have paper and lots of it! This is especially true if you are running a business. This is where we hope you will use The Paper Tiger to better manage the information. The Paper Tiger software is the easiest way to manage the paper in your business and personal life. At its core, it is a powerful indexing system that allows you to use the computer to Find Anything in Your Office in 5 Seconds or Less…Guaranteed! It is simple to learn and it really works! Take a 10 day FREE TRIAL!.