When the postman arrives with your mail, some people open it all and file it away neatly in its proper place so that it can be found straight away when required? If this is you, you’re probably a sorter. Others prefer not to spend the time organising and would rather leave their mail in a pile or a drawer, so it can still be found easily but some rummaging may be necessary for retrieval. If this is more like you then you’re probably a searcher.
People generally fall more strongly into either the searcher or sorter category. Knowing which one you are can help you become more efficient as sometimes, your normal preference is not necessarily effective. Choosing the best method for a particular task depends on the relative cost of each method. Creating a sorting system can complicated and it may not provide any benefit, especially if searching is easy. On the other hand, if something needs to be found in a hurry from a large, unordered set, searching may be very inefficient.
It all depends on the situation. Take email for example. If you get 20-30 emails per day, searching will probably be fine as if you need to find a particular email, you’ll probably know who it was from or remember something in the subject line. In that case, searching is easy and it also means that you don’t have to spend any time sorting it. If you get 5000 emails per day, some sorting will make things easier later as it will allow you to separate messages that you’ll definitely need again to find from those which you probably won’t. Some of the sorting will probably need to be automated though as otherwise, you’d spend a significant amount of time organising. If you don’t sort and you need to find a message where you don’t know the sender or subject line, it might take a long time to retrieve.