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3 Tips to Organise Your Dropbox Folders

3 Tips to Organise Your Dropbox Folders

According to Statista Dropbox has over 500 million users and according to Fortune.com Dropbox is still way ahead in the online cloud storage race, with almost double Google Drive users and five times that of Microsoft’s OneDrive. Dropbox, like other online cloud storage options, gives us the ability to share files, collaborate on files, and store files in one place.

They just seem to do it that bit better than their competitors. Only slightly better according to one source, but better never the less. If you are a Dropbox fan, you’ll know what I mean. You can’t always put your finger on why it’s better, it just makes everyday tasks a little easier to do. And that can be the difference between choosing one piece of tech over another.

So, Dropbox users and fans, here are 3 tips to make Dropbox even easier to use for you and your team.

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How do Most People Organise their Dropbox Folders?

The short answer is that they don’t really think too hard about it when they start using Dropbox. Bar a few that are organised and have the whole thing sorted. For those, maybe stop reading here?! For others, Dropbox can resemble their hard drive and their Outlook folders. Plentiful, and as badly organised as the messy drawer in their kitchen or their home filing (a pile on the sideboard).

The difference with Dropbox is that many people use it to collaborate with others and therefore being disorganised is not ok. When it is our disorganisation, just for us, it’s ok, but when you need to work with others, it’s not. Ever seen someone with a desk covered in paper? They’ll proudly tell you that they know where it all is. Working with others means we need to be more organised otherwise chaos ensues.

How Could You Organise Your Dropbox Folders to Work Better with Others?

There are 3 tips here that will help, and number 2 will help the most.

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1. Have 7 folders for your front line folders to make it easy for everyone to make the first decision as to where the file should be located.

Start narrow. Have a maximum number of first level folders. Seven is ideal. Read what the psychiatrists say to know why. Maybe ‘Clients’, ‘Financial’, ‘Suppliers’, ‘Team’, ‘Personal Development’, ‘Projects’, and ‘Meetings’. Very quickly the team will get used to making the first level filing decision quickly and easily. Juts choosing between 7 folders, not 35 folders.

    2. Number your Dropbox folders so that everyone can communicate with a common language of where folders are.

    Add numbers to your Dropbox folders because whilst Dropbox does enable link sharing, with a number it is much easier for a colleague to know where a file sits in the structure so that they can refine it more easily next time. I suggest updating your Dropbox folders as you go rather than doing all the folders at once because that is a Time Management.

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    Once this is complete, other colleagues will start to do the same once they see you start, and when you want to direct a colleague to a folder on the phone or via email just say, ‘2.5.22.4’, which means to follow the 2nd folder, then the 5th folder, then the 22nd folder, and finally the 4th folder.

      3. Add your initials and date to each file each time you update it so that everyone can easily see who made the last update and when.

      With adding initals and the date, you know who last updated the file and when. Dropbox does show the date the file was last modified, but not by who, and you can only see this when you click on each file. By having their initials and the date in the filename you can scan down a long list of files easily to see who and when the last file was updated.

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        Featured photo credit: By Sugar Pond (Mess) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons via commons.wikimedia.org

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        Darren A. Smith

        Founder of Making Business Matter - Training Provider to the UK Grocery Industry

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        Last Updated on May 7, 2021

        Productivity Boost: How to start your day at 5:00 AM

        Productivity Boost: How to start your day at 5:00 AM

        I have been an early-riser for over a year now. Monday through Friday I wake up at 5:00 AM without hitting the snooze button even once. I never take naps and rarely feel tired throughout the day. The following is my advice on how to start your day (everyday) at 5:00 AM.The idea of waking up early and starting the day at or before the sunrise is the desire of many people. Many highly successful people attribute their success, at least in part, to rising early. Early-risers have more productive mornings, get more done, and report less stress on average than “late-risers.” However, for the unaccustomed, the task of waking up at 5:00 AM can seem extremely daunting. This article will present five tips about how to physically wake up at 5:00 AM and how to get yourself mentally ready to have a productive day.

        Many people simply “can’t” get up early because they are stuck in a routine. Whether this is getting to bed unnecessarily late, snoozing repetitively, or waiting until the absolute last possible moment before getting out of bed, “sleeping in” can easily consume your entire morning. The following tips will let you break the “sleeping in” routine.

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        Relocate your alarm clock.

        Having an alarm clock too close to your bed is the number one reason people simply cannot get up in the morning. If your alarm clock is within arms reach of your bed, or if you can turn your alarm clock off without getting out of bed, you are creating an unnecessarily difficult situation for yourself. Before I became an early-riser, there were many times that I would turn off my alarm without even waking up enough to remember turning it off. I recommend moving your alarm clock far enough away from your bed that you have to get completely out of bed to turn it off. I keep my alarm clock in the bathroom. This may not be possible for all living arrangements, however, I use my cellphone as an alarm clock and putting it in the bathroom makes perfect sense. In order to turn off my alarm I have to get completely out of bed, and since going to the restroom and taking a shower are the first two things I do everyday, keeping the alarm clock in the bathroom streamlines the start of my morning.

        Scrap the snooze.

        The snooze feature on all modern alarm clocks serves absolutely no constructive purpose. Don’t even try the “it helps me slowly wake up” lie. I recommend buying an alarm that does not have a snooze button. If you can’t find an alarm without a snooze button, never read the instructions so you will never know how long your snooze button lasts. Not knowing whether it waits 10 minutes or 60 minutes should be enough of a deterrent to get you to stop using it.

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        Change up your buzzer

        If you use the same buzzer day in and day out, you begin to develop a tolerance to the sound. The alarm clock will slowly become less effective at waking you up over time. Most newer alarm clocks will let you set a different buzzer tone for the different days of the week. If you change your buzzer frequently, you will have an easier time waking up.

        Make a puzzle

        If you absolutely cannot wake up without repetitive snoozing, try making a puzzle for yourself. It doesn’t take rocket science to understand that the longer your alarm is going off, the more awake you will become. Try making your alarm very difficult to turn off by putting it under the sink, putting it under the bed, or better yet, by forcing yourself to complete a puzzle to turn it off. Try putting your alarm into a combination-locked box and make yourself put in the combination in order to turn off the alarm — it’s annoying, but extremely effective!

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        Get into a routine

        Getting up at 5:00 AM is much easier if you are doing it Monday through Friday rather than sporadically during the week. I recommend setting an alarm once that repeats everyday. Also, going to bed at about the same time every night is an important factor to having a productive morning. Learn how much sleep you need to get in order to not feel exhausted the following day. Some people can get by on 4-6 hours while most need 7-8.

        Have a reason

        Make sure you have a specific reason to get up in the morning. Getting up at 5:00 AM just for the heck of it is a lot more difficult than if you are getting up early to plan your day, pay bills, go for a jog, get an early start on work, etc. I recommend finding something you want to do for yourself in the morning. It will be a lot easier to get up if you are guaranteed to do something fun for yourself — compare this to going on vacation. You probably have no problem waking up very early on vacation or during holidays. My goal every morning is to bring that excitement to the day by doing something fun for myself.

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        As I previously mentioned, I have been using these tips for a very long time. Joining the world of early-risers has been a great decision. I feel less stressed, I get more done, and I feel happier than I did when I was a late-riser. If you follow these tips you can become an early-riser, too. Do you have any tips that I didn’t mention? What works best for you? Let us know in the comments.

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