I’ve recently posted on the Typemock blog on test organization, and gave an example of how organizing Outlook folders is not as effective as dumping everything in one bin and using “Search”. Here’s a quote (from myself, by myself):
The search box finds things much quicker. There’s also a penalty in the filing system. For each email, my friend needs to think where it belongs. What if it deserves to be in two places? The filing itself is costing him time.
Well, apparently, now there’s proof in electronic ink that I was actually right (which managed to astonish even me): The Harvard Business Review’s blog says: “Tip for Getting More Organized: Don’t”. Which takes my short version above, and makes it into a full fledged article. Worth reading.
As the article say:
Organizing is wasteful; getting its benefits is productivity.
With proper tools, and focusing of what we actually want to get from organizing, we get better productivity and effectiveness.
Would that convince the organizing people to leave their wicked ways? Of course not. People, like people, don’t like change. These guys love organizing stuff: It works, they are the experts of the system , and there’s an endorphin rush whenever something gets placed in the right place. Without pain, there’s no need for a change.
That doesn’t mean we should stop trying to convince. It is our professional responsibility to show the light. It could be testing, or productivity tools or agile or anything else that we think might get everyone more effective.
And who knows, maybe somewhere, sometime, we’ll be proven right by an impartial ivy league university blog.
PS: If you want to hear me try to convince, register to Agile Practitioners 2012. See? It’s already working.