Getting Things Done

Years ago I learned the Franklin Planner system of accomplishing tasks. I watched the 8-hour video and learned a lot about how to accomplish tasks in a timely manner. This process actually transformed they way I did business on a daily basis. For the next  year I used the Franklin Planner notebook but then in the following year I switched to using an electronic version on an HP Palmtop. My boss was reluctant about me using this electronic version, but it proved to work exceedingly well.

Now, some 16 years later, a lot has changed. Email has become part of our daily routine, voice mail in-boxes are filling up quickly, and computers are standard issue in just about every business. The bottom line is that our workflow has changed quite a bit.

So, today I was listening to a podcast entitled “The Camera Dojo” and the topic was “Tools to Help Manage Tasks and Productivity.” It was enlightening to say the least.

The one tip that I took to heart was how to manage the flood of email messages many of us receive on a daily basis. My email in-box had over 6,800 messages this morning. The idea that was so helpful was to sort through each email and give it a home–move it to a specific folder, trash it, or put it in an @Action folder. This last option was the one that intrigued me the most. I used to keep email messages in my in-box that need a response or action from me. This idea of creating a new folder for emails that need action was just what I needed. The idea of putting the @ symbol in front of the folder’s name puts it on top of the folder hierarchy and constantly in front of me. I took this great idea to heart and while I still have some work to do, my in-box only has 29 messages in it!

What are you doing to get things done?

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