After my adventure with the daily task planner that I shared in my last task management post, it was time for a bit of a shift again. I loved the daily list that included times and recurring events, but did not like that I had to save them until the tasks were done or the call were made. Time for change!
My first step was to track my voice mails separately. This was the first time I experimented with entering them directly into Outlook.
Each voice mail was entered as a task with all of the information in the notes section. As I returned each call, I could take additional notes or add more required action. If I was not able to reach the person, I could set a reminder to try again later. Genius! (So genius that it is actually the system I still use.)
For my actual task list, I used a planner similar to the one pictured below:
It’s important to note here that, at the time I was using this, I did have a number of evening and Saturday activities so I really did need to have Saturday on my list. If this is not important to you, this area can be turned into something else.
Friday continued to be my planning day for the coming week, even with weekend activities. Each day would have a list of tasks that I needed to accomplish. This worked really well for me as I only worked in the office one day each week, so I needed to know exactly what to work on when I had access to the printers and paperwork in the office.
This system worked for a few years for me. At this point, I was still relying on an actual paper planner for all of my appointments. I would simply fold up my task list and put it in my planner on the week I was on. Shazaam! A week at a glance!
This system was one of my favorites as it worked so well for me. I was eventually forced to adopt a new system as I started a new job where everyone’s schedules were on the Outlook calendar. I couldn’t rely on my trusty paper planner anymore to keep appointments, so I had to discover a new system.
How many times have you changed you task management system? Or does it seem like you are constantly tweaking it?