I came across a quick survey by Harvard Business Review to assess my personal productivity style. And, surprise, wouldn’t you know that I am a planner.
Planners prefer organized, sequential, and detailed thinking. They create to-do lists, (yup!) set aside time for tasks, (generally, yes) and prepare thorough and accurate project plans. (whenever possible, yes) They don’t waste time on anything unproductive or unimportant. (I generally dislike re-work and wasting time, but sometimes it is unavoidable) They comply with laws, policies, regulations, and quality and safety criteria, and they frequently complete work ahead of deadline. (think those are all givens in a professional environment, but yes.)
Productivity tools that appeal to Planners include: project management apps like Tom’s Planner and digital lists like OmniFocus, which let them track work by project, place, person, or date (never heard of either of these, but I have used similar tools in the past); agendas, an iPad app for creating and sharing interactive agendas (not strictly-followed, but yes, I do frequently mark down what I have to do to keep track of tasks); label makers, file folders, filing cabinets, drawer organizers, and pen holders. (yay, office supplies! Fast Company even suggests that color-coding can make you a more efficient thinker…)
Sounds accurate to me!
Whether you are a planner like me or are looking for ways to get more organized this year, here are some helpful tools and tips that you might enjoy:
- Customizing a Planner — an overview of how one blogger created a customized planner for herself to manage the day-to-day and look-ahead to other events in the year, complete with beautiful pictures. I am a big fan of the Martha Stewart office products, too, and a fan of keeping both a physical and digital agenda. There is also a more-recent post with pictures of her 2015 agenda, too.
- Getting Organized — Real Simple is one of my favorite go-tos for tips on how to get organized, and this article offers some advice on how to finally conquer the home organizing projects that you’ve been putting off (I’m probably guilty of many of them, myself.)
- TeuxDeux — a simple and “designy” to-do list app for your iPhone. (As an aside, there are three clever variations of the app/brand’s history that are worth a quick read for a chuckle.) Free
- DoIt.im — another app-based to-do list, but this one is available for both iOs and Android devices. Those who are interested in stats and pie charts will also enjoy the task analysis charts offered by the app. Free 30 day trial / $2.00 a month thereafter
- Google Planning Tools — I had to include this one for my fellow marketers out there. A handy reference of services provided by Google which allow you to see trends, brand insights, and consumer preferences over time to help you prepare for your next big campaign.
What results did you get? Take the assessment and let me know!