Wait. We're *gulp* Moving?!?! Part II.
Think Ahead, Then Think Some More
If you’re able to supervise the packing process (or doing it yourself), think far ahead about how you want things to be done. Is there a particular order in which shelving units should be packed? How do you want boxes to be labelled? Will your storage setup be replicated in the new place or will you need to modify how things are laid out? We had the advantage of an excellent move coordination consultant to help us with such things. I highly recommend having someone like this around or connecting with them immediately if they are working with your entire organization! They can help you picture things in a logical way.
One unexpected stumbling block for me was that one moving day at my Archives I had a whole crowd of college-age boys packing books and boxed collections as fast as possible. The book collection boxes were simple since I could explain to the packers to label them with a call number range. Not so the photographic materials. As I did not articulate the fact that those boxes also had collection numbers that could have been used to label the packing boxes, too, it was not done. Dozens of packed boxes ended up as simply “Photo Collection.” I realize now that I should have had a better system for this considering the lag time I experienced in unpacking. Since my boxes were a bit too generically labelled in a lot of cases, I wasn’t able to find things until they were fully unpacked.
How About You?
Most important in the whole process is to take care of yourself! Moving can cause stress you never thought possible. You will be tested like no other time in your job. Take a deep breath every single day and know when you need to take a step back, have some downtime, and keep yourself from losing your cool.
Has your Archive moved? How did it go? What went well and what could have gone better? Make us all cringe with your moving tales of woah and cheer on your move successes by telling us about it in the comments section below!
And … check last month's post for part one of this saga: “Wait. We're *gulp* Moving?!?! Part I”
And hey! Need some cool Archivist swag to distinguish yourself? Visit my design shop on Zazzle and pick up a button, tote, travel mug or other item with this or another neat-o design on it, made just for us Archives folks!