Never File Anything

By Scot Herrick | Job Performance

Jan 11

There are a lot of approaches out there to filing stuff for work. I know that when I was early in my career, I filed everything into those nice manila folders and saved the paper thinking I might use it later. I rarely did. But it was the “rarely” did that kept me doing it.

Later in my career, when most everything has become electronic, I now store little paper, but have much of my electronic stuff stored in “My Documents” folder at work. Anything from a folder labeled “fire drills” to “Performance Reviews” to “update files.”

I have a lot of stuff in storage. But I periodically go through the larger folder and delete that which I believe I no longer need. I’ve even become somewhat ruthless about not saving things I believe are not something needed for reference. I’m even more ruthless with e-mails.

Then I talked to a manager reporting to the CIO of my corporation. He told me he could never figure out the format to save paper files and it drove him crazy. So one day, he decided to file nothing.


For work, he files nothing. He takes no handouts from meetings. It’s simply this: make a decision and move on.

I’m not sure a Cubicle Warrior could do that. But I’d like to.

What filing system do you use for your work? What do you file?