“Gemba Kaizen: A Commonsense, Low-Cost Approach to Management” (Masaaki Imai) has a few pages on seiri, removing unneeded items from the workspace – use Amazon to find them starting on p. 63.
The first step of housekeeping, seiri, entails classifying items in gemba into two categories – necessary and unnecessary – and discarding or removing the latter from gemba. … All sorts of objects can be found in gemba. A close look reveals that only a small number of htem are needed in daily work; many others either will never be used or will only be needed in the distant future….An easy rule of thumb is to remove anything that will not be used within the next 30 days.
This of course brings up thoughts of Discardia, which still has a few days to run this season. Discardia is a floating holiday to celebrate letting go; seiri is a part of a process of continuous quality improvement to make letting go part of a workplace ethos. And, for that matter, how can you have findability of key items in a workplace if the place is full of unused and unneeded objects?