Sunday 24 June 2012

A tour of my Business A5 Filofax

I've posted about my business setup before, but not in any detail, so I thought I'd provide a brief tour.

This is my business Filofax. It's a Kensington leather A5. And, yes, it is black. Very, very black.

It's important to point out that I don't use this as my day-to-day Filofax. Most of the time I just carry a Personal (currently a brown Holborn), but I dust off this A5 when I'm off to see or work for a client and need to have lots of information to hand. Typically, it will be full but not bulging.

OK, then. Let's open her up.

For business, I think it is important that the setup should look professional. Consequently, my dividers are plain white card with some laminated tabs that I've pre-printed (details and template can be seen in this post.) Here is the view from the front of the binder...

... and from the back:

Turning to content, my diary section contains my Two-Page-Per-Day layout for the duration of the project. Here is an example day.

That was the day I met the Premier of Bermuda, quite a memorable day.

Most of the Filofax is filled with papers that are relevant to the client I'm working with. These documents were originally created in A4 or Letter format, so I just have to print them in booklet format on regular A4 paper, then use a guillotine to reduce them to A5 pages.

Here is an example from the 'Reports' section.

And here is a spread from 'Analysis'.

This is from the 'Tools' section.

I hope you enjoyed this tour of my business Filofax. I'd be very interested in leaning what other business users put in theirs.


LJ said...

Very nice layout, and love your templates. The only reason I can get away with all the childish stuff in my set up is because I don't have to deal with clients, all my dealings are with internal people and my filo usually stays on my desk all day :o) However, as my filo usage has been so successful in eliminating most of the need for me to work excessive hours or take work home, I am considering moving back to a work v home filo as opposed to having just the one, and may keep all my 'special' paper for my home one...

Keji said...

Hi Ray,

love the work Filo. Has really inspired me to try and be more professional.

Do you have any generic tips in creating a good work Filofax. Maybe you can talk more on how you settled on this system.


Ray Blake said...

That's an interesting question and not one I have given much thought to. I suppose the main difference between my personal and work binders is the read:write ratio. In my personal Filofax, I write a lot. There's little reference information in there; mostly it is calendar entries, temporary notes and tasks. The business binder, though, is mostly about reference information. I'll make notes, and use it to schedule my time, but that's a small part of its function. Mostly it's there to support a particular project with a particular client at any one time.

NinaRaffaela said...

Hello Ray,

thanks for sharing your Set-up.
It´s impressing, how much everyone can learn about other Set-ups. Ideas you´d never thought about, come up. And all the possible combination with the own System.

So thank you for Sharing. Like LJ, i have one Main Filofax for personal and business relating content. My filofax doesn´t get in touch with many other People, exept me. But because there are a few areas, my collegues might see (English-lesson-notes at work, or my WpP Business Overview) I will work on a new professional look for them.

Lesson learned. Thank you ;)

Anonymous said...

I like the 'professional' feel of this, but I'm curious as to what the 'discussion template' looks like up close? (my computer won't show me a big pic when I click on it) -- Wini.

Ray Blake said...

The 'Discussion Aid' is something I designed and have introduced to some of my clients, and it's one of three similar aids. The other two are the Observation Aid and the Inspection Aid. Collectively they are a mechanism for gaining assurance on the technical competence of an employee you supervise. To gain such assurance, you can either watch the employee perform his/her job, inspect his/her job outputs or ask him/her about aspects of the work. Each of the aids supports one of those three interventions. The shaded half gets completed before the discussion and you note down those technical aspects of the work you propose to ask about. Alongside, in the white areas, you can note down what you find and reflect on whether this meets the competence requirements of the role.

Shanti (aka Shanananana) said...

That's really nice, you've got a lovely clean look going on yet have clearly completely personalised it, function-wise, to meet your needs - it's a look I like for my own Faxes, especially the ones other people might see.


Ms. C said...

Hi Ray! I'm a big fan, and was very inspired by your post on making your own dividers-I have gone divider crazy since then! Anyway, love the "business" filofax post. I love how clean and neat everything looks!Thanks for sharing!

Unknown said...

Hi Ray! I agree a business filo should look clean and personal - I often wonder what I'd do if I had to use mine as a business filofax. I think it would be essential for it to look businesslike, I'm just not sure I'd be motivated to use it...



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