Mondays are productivity days at SimpleProductivity blog.
A few weeks I started thinking about how every “system” says that you don’t need special tools to implement their system…but also has the tools available. I came to the conclusion that the reason so many people buy, and discard, these specialized tools is that it is easier to buy a pre-made one and bend our styles to the tool than to make a productivity system without guidance. The aim of this series is going to be to help us define our toolset to make us productive.
Where You Work
Where you do your work is going to define to a large part what you use to keep track of it. I take a very loose view of “work” here – I include my personal tasks as the “work” in question, as well as the things I do at my client site.
It helps to take a look at where you are when you are working. Are you near a computer? Near a phone? Can you have electronic devices or not? Do you have access to WiFi? All of these questions play into what will become our base system.
For example, if you are never near a computer, it would not make sense to have a completely computer-based system. Likewise, if you work out of your car, any computerized system will have to be entirely self-contained (i.e. no Internet) or have access to WiFi.
Figuring Out Where You Work
This is going to have to be looked at within the decisions you made from last week (How Many Systems Do You Need? (How To Craft Your Own Productivity Tracking Tools Series)). For each system you can separate out, look at where you do the work.
Figuring Out Where You Prefer to Work
Most often, you will have some flexibility in how you keep track of your information. For example, even if you are working at a computer 90% of the time, that doesn’t preclude you using paper to track your system.
Case Study: My System
In my case, I maintain two distinct systems. The first, for work, is client dependent. All work I do belongs to the client by contract, so it would make sense that I keep the information at the client site, or readily producible. At the present time, I am only working for one client, and they provide the hardware. I do not have access to WiFi, and I cannot sync a handheld device to their system, so the system should reside either on their computer or on paper, or some hybrid of the two.
For my non-work life, I am not connected to my computer all the time, so I need something portable. I do not own small devices that are WiFi enabled, so unless I’m going to lug my computer around with me, I need to not be completely computer-centric. I prefer not to lug a bulky planner around, and I really like being able to search everything at once, so that would point me in the direction of an electronic-based system.
Photo by koneude