As per David, everyone in your house needs to have one in-tray for each member. After listening to this I really got excited, rushed to my favorite stationery store and bought 3 vertical box in-trays (see pic) one for my mom, one for my wife and one for myself. I started using the in-tray for myself diligently.
But my mom and my wife didn’t get the idea of what to do about it. In spite of me telling them twice on what was the purpose of these in-trays and what you are supposed to do with it. I.e. Any document that belongs to me put it in my in-tray, and same rule goes for my wife and mom.
Unfortunately, both of them didn’t do what I told them. In fact I think they made an unspoken pact of using their in-tray as an extra drawer putting any stray item laying in the house. This Anarchy went to such an extent that it got filled and became an ugly furniture piece. Finally it started resembling a graveyard full of all the toys, stationary, ornaments, spare parts and what not.
I really got fed up, took up the argument with my wife and my mom on how you are supposed to use the GTD in-tray. But alas, with 2 against one I couldn’t defend my case. And when they said “These are your fancy items you look after it.” Was the final nail in the coffin, the whole purpose of the in-tray was to have a bin which belongs to you so that you are managing all the things that belong to you.
With a heavy heart, I cleared all the items from the in-trays of my mom and wife and gave it to the scrap dealers who come to collect the newspaper every month.
Conclusion: I think I was not able to enroll my wife and mom into productivity benefits and organizing ease. What do you say?