The current rage among legal professionals is document management. Law office consultants stress the importance of maintaining an effective document workflow, from drafting to editing to filing. Paperweights, though, are often overlooked when thinking about document management. That’s unfortunate.
While paperweights today are characterized more as a craft or art than as a document management tool, that may not have always been the case. Paperweights have been in existence since at least the mid-1800’s and they’ve been used ever since as a way to manage documents on your desk. A single paperweight, for instance, on a specific stack of papers can signify one part of the document drafting workflow. Using multiple paperweights, ideally color-coded or coded by pattern, opens up potentially endless options for organizing your documents and improving your drafting workflow.
When you meet with a law office management consultant or discuss your options with document management vendors, inquire about their knowledge, use, and recommendations for paperweights. If the consultant or vendor does not offer any practical suggestions (or, worse, does not recommend or even know about the use of paperweights), consider finding a different advisor. Any consultant in the document management field should have basic knowledge and understanding of paperweights.
What is the optimal paperweight weight? Does it vary depending on the average wind level of the office?
Big Brain says
Good question, Jeff. Indoor air velocity (what some people refer to as wind level) is one of a number of factors to consider when choosing a paperweight. Other factors include opacity, color, and heft. Ultimately, it comes down to what feels comfortable in your hand. For some, it may be a classic globe paperweight. For others, a clear glass teddy bear or an Eiffel Tower replica work. We typically leave that up to the individual so long as a good system of distinguishing between paperweights is in place (e.g. you know that the efiled documents are under a Troll and that the draft documents are held down by a frosted-glass Madonna and Child).