Desperately Seeking Organization

About a year ago I was promoted to manager of a busy department in a big metropolitan hospital.  Since then, the amount of work I’m responsible for has grown exponentionally but I’ve never been able to find a system to organize my work/projects/deadlines and it’s really starting to effect my performance.  I use to be able to manage all my projects in my head but those days are long gone.

This is not the first job I’ve had where I’ve had multiple projects going at the same time, but the number of projects I’m managing is on a whole new level now.  And coupled with managing over 20 people (some very high maintenance), my desk has turned into meaningless piles of shit.  I feel like I’m managing my deadlines according to whoever yells at me the most on any given day.  I’m stressed out and freaked out and I need help.

I use Outlook to manage my schedule at work and I’ve tried using their task list with reminders but it just doesn’t work for me.  The reminders always seem to pop up at times when I cannot stop what I’m doing to address the issue.  I’ve tried post-it notes.  I’ve tried note pads.  I’ve tried making folders for projects only to find that I’ve already made a folder for that project and forgotten about it.

One problem I think I have is that I’m looking for one system that will work for big projects as well as simple task lists and I’m starting to think that type of system just doesn’t exist.

I was really surprised at the limited information I was able to find on the Internet about this topic.  But I did find book that kept popping up.  Getting Things Done by David Allen.  Apparently this guy is the king of productivity which is just the kinda king I need right about now.  I think I’ll try to pick this book up and take it with me on my business trip this week.  I’m hoping to return Wednesday a new, organized woman.

If you have any good systems for organizing your desk/task lists/projects, I’d love to hear about them.  I’m desperate!