Operating Your Startup Business

Clean Up Your Business Part 1

Written by Jay Shapiro for Gaebler Ventures

Stale business relationships and a cluttered and dusty workspace can hinder your businesses progress. While it can seem daunting thinking about cleaning up your act, doing so is always beneficial.

When your house has been spring cleaned you find it more relaxing to be in it and you also feel you can run it more efficiently.

It's easier to find things because everything is in its rightful place, and the environment, in its new and organized state is one you feel you can function in far better. It's the same with your business - both the environment and the way you operate.

When you give your house a good seeing to (it doesn't have to be in spring time) you do so because life detritus has gathered. It's a fact of life. Stuff just accumulates in even the best run homes. Getting rid of it all is psychologically very cleansing and cathartic. And it's not just material aspects that sometimes need a clean up - your business behavior may well benefit from a wash down and rethink.

Home detritus builds up and so does business detritus - often more rapidly.

Be honest, how many piles of unused/obsolete files are cluttering up your workspace or taking up valuable storage areas that could be put to better use? Business clutter can extend to work relationships that are messy or not of value - and these, although it sounds ruthless, need to be dealt with too.

Much of this sounds like stating the obvious - but if it's so easy and simple to understand, how come so many of us let order slip and carry on trying to run a business in a chaotic setting. We are probably all guilty of this to different degrees.

Here's how to get your hands dirty and clean up your business:

The Working Environment:

1. If your workplace looks like an oversized game of Jenga then you probably have too many stacks of things that need attending to but have been overlooked or filed under 'deal with this another day'. The fact is, you don't deal with them and the resultant towers of stuff are space eaters, chaotic and an eyesore. Knock the tower down, and do some or all of the following:

  • File things
  • Bin things
  • Delegate to others
  • Shred stuff
  • Recycle it

2. Clear out old clients' files. There seems to be a karmic magic going on with this activity. No sooner have you cleared out old client files than you bring in new ones. By clearing out we don't necessarily mean you need to burn all traces, but it's fair to say that you could put them into long terms storage instead of having to walk around them on the floor of your office.

3. Dispose of all the clutter that is, well... cluttering up your office. Clutter is anything that isn't necessary, isn't ordered and is in the way and gathering dust. If there is an avalanche of unneeded items on your desk, then remove it. Put it all in a box and take it away from the desk area immediately. From there do what you will with it. Give it to charity, take it home to sort through or recycle or trash it. The aim is to clear the area.

Jay Shapiro is a freelance writer based in the UK. Jay has a particular interest in the emotive aspects of the entrepreneur's character. "Alongside the nuts and bolts of business, the character of the person is often the ingredient responsible for success."

Share this article

Additional Resources for Entrepreneurs

Lists of Venture Capital and Private Equity Firms

Franchise Opportunities


Business Glossary


Conversation Board

We greatly appreciate any advice you can provide on this topic. Please contribute your insights on this topic so others can benefit.

Leave a Reply

Questions, Comments, Tips, and Advice

Email will not be posted or shared
Code Image - Please contact webmaster if you have problems seeing this image code

Problem Viewing Image? Load New Code