Home Office Filing Systems ...
By Personality Type

by Lakeshore Bookkeeping Services
(Prince George, BC, Canada)

Helen Buttigieg, author of Organizing Outside the Box, appeared on the CBC show Steven and Chris in February 2010 to show viewers how to organize their papers by personality.

Helen says there are two kinds of paperwork personalities .... filers and pilers. She points out that one type is not better than the other. For the most part, I'm a piler.


Pilers like to stack and have their papers horizontal. Their offices tend to look messier because they need to see their papers ... but they access their papers often and know where everything is.

Good filing accessories are stackable trays (I use a lot of these) and baskets ... or try out a literature sorter which has 8 or so cubby holes for categories. It makes finding the paperwork quick and easy ... and less stressful ... just make sure to label the trays and baskets.

Helen reminded pilers that "miscellaneous" is not category!


Filers like like to tuck their paperwork out of site and in a vertical position ... so they tend to keep too much paperwork ... and access it less often because out of sight out of mind. So filers have to set time aside each year to purge the out-dated paperwork.

Good filing accessories are banker's boxes for papers you don't need to access too often and a system with file folders, wall files, step sorters or accordion files for the things you need on a more regular basis.

Steven asked about filing categories for filers. Helen recommended that filers keep their categories broad so you don't end up with one piece of paper in a file.

What Is Your Filing Personality?

What kind of filing personality are you?

Have you found a way to file that is somewhat and really works well in terms of efficiency and organization?

Share your experience and knowledge by making a post in the comments section below.

Resources - You can watch a video of her presentation on the CBC website www.cbc.ca/stevanandchris/2010/02/how-to-organize-your-paperwork.

(Webmaster's note: I'm not giving a live link because web sites reorganize too often making it impossible to find the article. If I just give the file path, it's easier to search the website if/when the file gets moved.)

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