Does your content spark joy?
It should.


Taking Notes from Marie Kondo

The KonMari Method has taken the world by storm and people are using the popular methodology to not only declutter their closets, but every aspect of their lives.

For those unfamiliar with the KonMari methodology, it’s the popular brainchild of a Japanese organizational expert named Marie Kondo. Her quest is to remove clutter from our lives so that we can benefit from a tidy home and the calm mindset it provides. As she demonstrates in her four books and on her new television show, Marie focuses on assessing each item individually and determining if it brings joy.

You can apply the same tactic to your training and learning content. Ask yourself, when your employees look for instructions on how to perform a task or search for operational guidelines, is the content they need easy to find?

For many organizations, the simple answer is “no.” Most have an abundance of content in various electronic and physical locations that’s been developed over the lifetime of the company. While some content may be used regularly, the majority is outdated, obsolete, or not used at all because it’s difficult to discover or burdensome to use.

Putting It Into Practice

If that sounds familiar, here’s a quick mental exercise. Think about your content library as being a closet full of clothes. Visualize each piece of content as a clothing item with different types (shirts, pants) equating to distinct purposes (new hire onboarding, operating procedures). Then consider these questions:

  • Is it easy and quick to scan and find what you need? Or does everything appear to be squished together because there are so many items?
  • Is there a clear organization method? Are similar items grouped together, or is everything mixed?
  • Is old stuff hanging next to new? Are there a lot of outdated items or multiple versions of the same item?
  • Do you have to go to more than one closet (location) to find something?
  • Does searching for an item feel like a simple and rewarding process? Or does it bring about feelings of frustration and anxiety?

Imagining your content as physical items (such as clothing) can illuminate the challenge your employees face every day and demonstrate why it’s time to transform your content library.

Finding the Joy

Much like the overstuffed closets and piles of papers that clutter up houses, your company’s content library is likely full of resources that could use a good decluttering exercise. Following the practices of Marie Kondo, you should only keep the items that spark joy. Since content is developed to share knowledge, promote best practices, and provide clear instructions on how to perform tasks the right way, it’s not only essential to operations but also enables your employees to do their jobs correctly.

That’s the precise content you want to make easy to find and even easier to use. Employees should open every piece of content in your library and have an easy, informative, and joyful experience (and maybe even interactive, too!).

If you’re sold on the idea of bringing joy to your content library but are worried about the decluttering process, check out our five steps for consolidating and transforming your content library. While it may sound daunting, remember that you don’t want your employees to feel that way either when they try to find resources.

While you can bring joy to every employee who opens your simplified library and finds the exact content needed, organizations are also the beneficiaries of stronger employee performance and better retention when content is tidy and decluttered. And that’s something everyone can be joyful about.