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World expert uses RAFT to save time

MEDIA RELEASE: World expert uses RAFT to save time

12 November 2012

Everything in our space, at a sub-conscious level, reaches out to tug at the corners of our mind. Clean up and you’ll feel not only more energised, but you’ll also feel that you have more time. Clutter is exhausting and messy workspaces are a reflection of how tired, stressed, and ineffective we are feeling inside. “What starts as a messy desk can end up as a catalyst for other issues such as procrastination, ineffective communication and time wasting,” says Robyn Peace, world-renowned time management expert from “Because how can you think clearly in such an environment? Organisation is an essential tool in helping us achieve our goals but for many it doesn’t come naturally. A lot of the strategies we use at can help you break existing bad habits and show you how to work more efficiently.”

One of the techniques used is called RAFT, an acronym for Read, Act, File or Throw. The concept is simple and is used to restore order when the volume of paperwork becomes overwhelming- this exact method can be used with emails too. Put some uninterrupted time aside to tidy up the office. Take each piece of paper and put in one of the RAFT piles, so you are putting like with like. Do not be tempted to get involved with any detail on the paper or you will get side tracked. Each piece must be put in one of the piles (deciding which one can be quite hard for some people). Then you can go through each pile and deal with the detail.

Irma Harris, of Te Awakairangi Health Network, was acting CEO at Kowhai Health at a time when all their contracts were being reviewed and re-negotiated; a merger was taking place and three senior staff left. “The sheer volume of emails and paperwork was swallowing me up. I needed to be able to keep focused, prioritise and move swiftly yet at the same time I was on a steep learning curve and it was imperative I had a clear understanding of specific elements before decisions were made.” Harris contacted Robyn Pearce; “I had been to one of her breakfast workshops in the past and picked up some techniques that have been very valuable to me. I knew that she would be able to help me plan and prioritise, her techniques could be implemented immediately, and they were certainly what got me through.“

As workloads and the stresses of day-to-day life continue to increase, so too does the subsequent paperwork. Robyn Pearce says “those who struggle to manage their work areas are usually guilty of leaving items on their desk ‘so I won’t forget them.’ However, they do forget and as days roll by the things at the bottom disappear as the paper multiplies like thistles.” Robyn Pearce has been running her highly successful breakfast workshops over the last year, at a different location each month around New Zealand. The workshops focus on a main topic, such as prioritising, email management, or delegation and also provide participants with other timesaving strategies to increase productivity. They give attendees a motivation injection that inspires them to make changes that have an impact on their time management. Her next breakfast workshop, in Wellington on the 30th of November, focuses on the paper war.

Workshop details: Getting a Grip Breakfast Club Auckland, Friday 30th November 2012 from 7.00-9.00am at Write Ltd, Level 9, Baldwins Centre, 342 Lambton Quay, Wellington. For more information visit


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