GTD: How to prevent an overload of "due today"Wednesday, March 11th, 2015
After learning David Allen's Getting Things Done from Eric Mack for a year, I had a problem: on any given day, I had way more things marked as "due" than I could possibly get done. I dealt with it by taking all my incomplete items at the end of each day and changing the due date to the next day -- you can imagine how well that worked out.
...times 20, but better-defined
This continued until I realized something: I was putting due dates on a lot of things that weren't really due that day. This not only overloaded my to-do list, but gave me the extra mental stress of filtering my tasks, asking "Is this really due today?"
Here's how I solved this: by distinguishing between "due" and "like to do."
Continue Reading "GTD: How to prevent an overload of "due today"" »
Brief observations from IBM Connect 2014 OGSMonday, January 27th, 2014
To that end, IBM is rebranding their collaboration social tools under the IBM Connections brand:
IBM Notes (The product formerly known as Lotus Notes) is now IBM Connections Mail
IBM Sametime is now IBM Connections Chat and Meetings.
So, we have IBM Connections Mail and the IBM Domino Application Platform.
[Update] A colleague informed me that there are two other name changes:
Lotus Notes Apps will be known as IBM Connections Domino apps, and
SmartCloud for Social Business will become IBM Connection in the Cloud
[Note: this is not the first time that IBM has changed product names. In fact, Sametime was changed to Lotus Messaging and then changed back.]
I have a 20+ year history with the Notes name so I will miss the name but not what it can do for me, I'm all for the branding consolidation if it leads to better unity and vision across the IBM portfolio.
There was no mention of the Notes client or the Domino server other than a brief mention that IBM will be hosting Domino Apps in the cloud.
Microsoft is sure to pronounce what they have been trying to get their customers to believe for years, that Notes is dead. Notes is most certainly not dead, but it is evolving and I will be watching to see what roadmap IBM presents for the future.
Meanwhile, IBM showed off a new vision for the mail client - their Mail Next vision. While new and shiny, it looks like it will be quite distracting to actually use when you just want to get work done. There no way to actually use this product (if it is yet a product) and it will likely be some time before we can try it first hand so time will tell on that front.
Speaking of new and shiny, it's going to take some work to sift through the marketing speak and shiny screen objects to find which new features flaunted at Connect 2014 will actually lead to a boost in worker productivity and which are, well, simply shiny...
[Update #2: Apparently, Jeff Schick said that there will be continuous support and ongoing development for the Rich Client formerly known as IBM Notes]
"Do Not Use Microsoft Exchange 2013 for Getting Things Done"Sunday, September 1st, 2013
Harsh words? Perhaps, but Jason has the expertise to know what he's talking about and backs up his claim.
Even DelBene’s favorite whipping boy IBM Notes allows mobile workers to access all major functionality of its PIM from a web browser, including editing and sorting by category it’s journal and todo features. IBM’s Traveler team also develops its own versions of ToDo and secure email features for IOS and Android so mobile workers can maintain a secure and consistent experience across all major platforms. IBM Notes’ cross platform compatibility was a primary reason for me to shift over to using IBM Notes from Microsoft Exchange.
As a reader of my blog you know that as a 20+ year user and long time champion of Lotus/IBM Notes, I will encourage Jason to give IBM Notes a try. I will also invite him to share his experience here on the Notes on Productivity Blog.
Meanwhile, here is the direct link to Jason's post on his Open Notes, Et Cetera blog where he focuses on productivity technology and social branding based on experiential knowledge.
Technology Solves Problems, Frustrates - David AllenThursday, February 23rd, 2012
Here's a quick Bloomberg interview with David Allen talking about the frustrations and opportunitiues of technology.
David Allen's is a long time Lotus Notes user and champion. I set up David's first Lotus Notes server nearly 20 years ago. (He was on cc:Mail before that).
Invitation: Super Productivity Tools for SuperwomenSunday, September 11th, 2011
Technology Hands-on Workshop 2011 Series:
"Super Productivity Tools for Superwomen"
Getting Things Done with IBM Lotus Notes
Presented by productivity experts Kelly Forrister and Eric Mack
On September 14, 2011, the IBM SVL (Silicon Valley Labs) Super Women's Group will host another productivity event as part of their 2011 technology hands-on workshop series.
This week, the topic will be "Getting Things Done with IBM Lotus Notes" and it will be presented by Kelly Forrister of The David Allen Company and Eric Mack of eProductivity. Here's your opportunity to learn more about GTD® from the experts.
While the event is hosted by the IBM SVL group, they have graciously agreed to allow anyone to sign up to attend. There's no cost to attend the web event, however, space is limited so be sure to register early.
Learn more and register here. (Space is limited.)
All registered attendees will receive special productivity resources and tools.
Please share this information with your coworkers. You may this link to forums at work or click on the social media buttons at the top of the page. Or do both! Something special may happen as a result!. Thanks!
PCWorld: Making Lotus Notes users more productiveWednesday, May 25th, 2011
For the second time in just six months, PCWorld's Robert Strohmeyer writes about making Lotus Notes users more productive. As a follow-up to his article, "master your email so it doesn't master you", Strohmeyer talks about the recent announcement of eProductivity Stand-Alone:
Last week, eProductivity released a new version of the product, eProductivity Stand-Alone, designed for Notes users who lack the administrative permissions to change their mail template. However, like its enterprise-grade cousin, eProductivity Integrated, it still has the ability to turn messages into next actions, set customized contexts, categorize the inbox, and walk you through your weekly review.While he no longer uses Lotus Notes as his primary email system - a point not missed in his article - he's quick to point out that there are many professionals who depend on Notes for the bulk of their daily business communications, calendar tracking, and other essential work stuff.
I should take a moment to say that, while Notes isn't my preferred communications tool, it does happen to be the chosen messaging and calendar platform of a certain Mr. David Allen. And I think it's fair to say that Mr. Allen knows a thing or two about GTD. And when I last spoke to David Allen about his personal toolkit for GTD, he claimed to use eProductivity. So there's a solid recommendation for you.Strohmeyer also mentions the new "Essentials" version of eProductivity that is free and does not require any change to the user's mail file.
I enjoy reading Robert's Smart Productivity articles. I first met Robert at the GTD Summit in San Francisco. He's not only technically minded but he's also an avid GTDer. As a result, I appreciate the fact that he concludes with this recommendation:
If you're a Notes user interested in bringing GTD to your inbox, eProductivity is definitely worth a look.
Source: PCWorld: Productivity Stand-Alone Brings GTD to Lotus Notes
New Podcast on the free eProductivity Reference appThursday, December 9th, 2010
In this episode, Eric Mack is joined by GTD creator David Allen and GTD coach Kelly Forrister, a powerhouse trio of productivity knowledge. They're discussing the ins and outs of personal reference systems and how you can create an outstanding system in Lotus Notes.
Ask yourself: Do you have a trusted system where you can park all that non-actionable reference information that comes your way? Or is your desk, your office, or even your house a personal information landfill?
Tune in for expert solutions to these questions.
Posted by Ryan Heathers
PCWorld mentions Lotus Notes and eProductivityTuesday, October 26th, 2010
The closing section of the article features tips from recognized productivity experts such as David Allen, who happens to be a long-time passionate champion of Lotus Notes and eProductivity.
The article had this to say:
Allen is a Lotus Notes enthusiast, through and through, but he enhances the spartan Notes interface with the eProductivity add-on, which adds next-generation features to the software. One of these features, for example, enables the user to drag an e-mail message to a "call" button in order to place an immediate phone call to the person who sent the message.
David Allen also mentioned ActiveWords (which integrates seamlessly with eProductivity) and MindManager as being among his favorite tools.
Hat tip to Ed Brill.
Getting Things Done with Lotus Notes - Episode #6Thursday, September 16th, 2010
People often ask us to share what productivity tools we use. In episode #6, we talk about the tools we use in the areas of:
- Information Management
- Visualization & Planning
- Mobile Productivity
- Rapid Capture
- GTD Implementation
Following the discussion, we answer a number of questions from the audience. This is a long podcast, so I decided to break it up into four parts for easier listening.
Episode #6 of Getting Things Done with Lotus Notes - The Podcast
Hey Gmail, Lotus Notes did it firstThursday, September 2nd, 2010
I’ve been reading the many articles on the new Gmail Priority Inbox with great interest. People are praising this “innovative” Gmail feature all over the place. And it is pretty cool. But as Alan Lepofsky pointed out, Lotus Notes has had similar inbox categorization features for over a decade. But apparently, few people know that. Or maybe, few people care…
The Lotus Notes categorized inbox provides many of the features that everyone is raving about in Gmail’s release. In Notes, your inbox can sort emails according to high priority marks, calendar invites, and the unwashed masses of regular emails. It’s helpful. If you’re a person who receives critical calendar invites interspersed with stacks of regular emails, it can be a life-saving feature.
The one feature that the Gmail Priority Inbox provides that’s unique is the learning algorithm that trains itself to know what emails are most important to you. But I can see the value of this feature swinging all over the place. The jury is still out on whether Gmail can accurately predict what's important to me.
Continue Reading "Hey Gmail, Lotus Notes did it first" »
GTD and Lotus Notes = Resounding SuccessTuesday, April 13th, 2010
Guest post by Ryan Heathers
Last Thursday, we held an IBM employee-only "Getting Things Done in Lotus Notes" webinar with eProductivity's Eric Mack and featured guest, GTD® creator David Allen. Judging by the 725 IBMer registrants, the 200 questions asked during the session, and the multitudes of follow-up emails that attendees sent us, the webinar was a resounding success.
The webinar even generated the Tweet of the Month! (trademark pending, of course...)
David and Eric were on fire and shared many things they've learned about being more productive with Lotus Notes.
David delivered a passionate explanation of the Essentials of GTD. He spoke on the vital importance of a trusted system and reminded us that you can only feel good about what you're not doing if you know what you're not doing.
For those who had never heard of GTD, it was a eye-opening experience (based on their comments afterwards) and for those of us familiar with GTD, it was a welcome refresher.
Eric then showed how to set up Lotus Notes for GTD. First, he demonstrated how regular Lotus Notes can be an effective GTD list manager, and then he showed how using eProductivity takes Lotus Notes to the next level. The best part? It was all stuff people could put to use right away.
Plus, all attendees received a free resource kit which included an eProductivity Reference database full of great GTD articles from David's library.
First, let me say a big thanks to everyone who attended the webinar. Your participation was appreciated and it's been great to hear from so many of you about how the webinar benefited you.
Let me also say thanks to everyone who helped spread the word about the webinar.
Another opportunity to hear David and Eric live:
On April 28th, you have another opportunity to experience David and Eric's extensive knowledge of productivity.
This time, the free event is open to the general public but spaces are filling up quickly. So before the event is booked out, make sure to tell all your friends who use Lotus Notes and could use more time & less stress in their lives!
Register for the webinar
Now, in case you're still deciding if this is the webinar for you, here's the planned agenda:
- Your Personal Productivity Equation
- Essentials of GTD
- How to set up Lotus Notes with GTD
- David's Productivity Toolkit
- eProductivity™ for IBM Lotus Notes
- Getting Started with GTD and Lotus Notes
As you can see, this is a must-attend event! Register today.
To get automatic updates on eProductivity's webinar events, you can sign up for the free eProductivity newsletter.
GTD & Lotus Notes Webinar for IBMersWednesday, March 31st, 2010
David Allen's book, "Getting Things Done - The Art of Stress-Free Productivity", and his GTD® methodology have revolutionized the way millions of working men and women tackle their work. His system turns achieving control and perspective over your commitments into a daily reality.
Many people know this about GTD. What you may not know is that for the past 17 years, David has used Lotus Notes as his personal organization system.
This month, David and I will be co-presenting two webinars on GTD & Lotus Notes.
Some of the things we'll show:
- How to go home at the end of the day with an empty inbox
- How to tackle your work week with the confidence of knowing you’re being as productive as you can possibly be
- What's in David's productivity toolkit and how he uses Lotus Notes to get things done
Webinar exclusively for IBM employees
On April 8th from 10:00am – 11:30am PST, we’ll be doing a webinar exclusively for IBM employees on applying GTD to Lotus Notes. Many IBMers are fans of GTD already, and this will give more insight into David’s master tips, tricks & strategies. We’ll also look at eProductivity – the only software tool for Lotus Notes that’s earned the distinctive “GTD Enabled” certification.
If you’re an IBM employee, sign up now. Space is limited.
Webinar open to the public
On April 28th from 10:00am - 11:30am PST, David and I will be doing another "Getting Things Done in Lotus Notes" webinar for the general public.
Go here to get more details and sign up now. Space is limited.
Elegant GTD- IBM’s new cloud opportunity?Saturday, January 16th, 2010
David Allen thinks that IBM has a cloud computing opportunity: elegant, cloud-based GTD.
Footage taken from an interview with David on January 10, 2010. For more clips from the interview, go here.
David Allen: The combined power of Lotus NotesWednesday, January 13th, 2010
In this clip from my interview with David, he relates his background as a long-time Notes user and advocate. He finds combining the power of Lotus Notes and eProductivity to be a natural fit and he's very pleased with the results.
I have a few more clips that I hope to post soon.
GTD Productivity Software Winners Announced!Wednesday, June 24th, 2009
Over the past few weeks, two free drawings were held for GTD Productivity tools. Sponsored by ICA, ActiveWord Systems, and Gyronix, the drawings awarded prizes with a total value of over $2000.
People were invited to to download and explore eProductivity for Lotus Notes. Everyone that did, got their name entered in the drawing. Those that took the time to send in feedback, got their name entered a second time. No purchase was required.
Six people's names were drawn on June 2 and again on June 15 for a total of 12 lucky winners.
Visit the Inside.eProductivity blog to find out who won.
New iPhone features for Lotus Notes? For real?Sunday, June 14th, 2009
Chris Blatnick posted a comment that said that Notes/Domino 8.51 will include native Lotus Traveler support for the iPhone but it is unclear if this will provide the features that Kelly needs.
As far as I know, one problem that business users face with the iPhone, at least from a GTD perspective, is that the iPhone does not support tasks. So, unless Lotus Traveler 8.51 adds a Task app to the iPhone, Kelly will still not achieve the level of productivity she seeks.
To give Kelly her ultimate GTD system, she needs::
1. Lotus Notes - Got that
2. eProductivity - Got that
3. iPhone - Got that
4. An on-device task application - It must sync with Notes. (See #5)
5. A way to sync tasks (#4) with Lotus Notes - Traveler? mNotes?
Now that you have seen the list of requirements, do you have any recommendations?
Read: Kelly Forrister: New iPhone feature for Lotus Notes?
Note to iPhone software vendors: If you have a product that meets requirements #4 and #5 I invite you to post a comment and link here. Everyone else: please don't flood the blog comments with advertisements for your iPhone products unless they meet requirements #4 and #5. Thank you!
How to best serve Notes users switching from Outlook?Friday, May 1st, 2009
I'm trying to figure out how to best serve our customers that are switching to Lotus Notes from Microsoft Outlook. When we launched eProductivity, we designed it to be the ultimate productivity application for Lotus Notes users. Our marketing plan didn't include getting people to switch to Lotus Notes from something else. Frankly, I didn't expect anyone would.
I was wrong.
We are learning that people are switching to Lotus Notes in order to use eProductivity, but many of these people have never used Lotus Notes before. The numbers are very small right now, but they are growing.
I should point out that these are individual users, not enterprise deployments. At least not yet. Typically, these are people that learn about David Allen's Getting Things Done® (GTD®) Methodology from a book, web site, seminar, or conference, get hooked on the idea of increasing personal productivity, learn that David Allen uses and recommends Lotus Notes and eProductivity. They then Google for these tools and install them.
Traditionally, Lotus Notes has not been been sold directly to end-users and an end-user wanting to get started or seeking answers can find it challenging, even though IBM has a huge collection of support material. Those that are successful in finding, buying, downloading, and installing Lotus Notes have no problem installing eProductivity, but I frequently hear of people having small questions or problems setting up POP3 or IMAP and Lotus Notes. While I'm thrilled that non-Notes users are finding value in the solution we have to offer, if someone switches to Lotus Notes from Outlook because of my product I want to do what I can to help ensure that their experience with Lotus Notes is a positive one.
I've always thought that Lotus Notes is the ultimate Information Manager, long before GTD and eProductivity came along. At present, Notes is positioned as a solution for IT and enterprises. What I'm seeing is interest from individuals. You can see the obvious gap. This gap represents an opportunity, if IBM can find ways to make this experience easier for new users.
Continue Reading "How to best serve Notes users switching from Outlook?" »
Lotusphere 2009: Have you voted yet?Monday, September 29th, 2008
I encourage you to visit the IdeaJam site, review the Best Practice session proposals, and cast your vote for or against the session proposals as you choose.
While you are there, please be sure to check out (and vote!) on these two recent proposals:
Lotus Notes and Me - Maximizing Personal Productivity
Getting Things Done with Lotus Notes - Making Notes Personal
Remember you have a vote.
Make it count.
eProductivity Equation: Get Connected & Get CreativeWednesday, April 23rd, 2008
As I wrap up this series, I want to share some of the resources I've used to get connected to the information and people who help me sharpen my skills.
Here's what I shared in my e-mail about some of my current favorite ways to stay connected to all things GTD:
Continue Reading "eProductivity Equation: Get Connected & Get Creative" »
eProductivity Equation: Coaching to get it rightMonday, April 21st, 2008
There's a lot to be learned from reading books and attending seminars. I routinely do both. But when I really want to improve my skills or performance in a given area I turn to a coach, a mentor, or an expert that can help me accomplish my objectives. I think it's important to understand that hiring a productivity coach is not a magic bullet for getting things done. YOU have to do the work, but a good coach can help you see what may not be readily apparent to you and encourage you to build sustainable habits. (I'll talk more about sustainable habits at the end of this post.)
Here's what I wrote to the person who asked me about getting things done on the run...
Continue Reading "eProductivity Equation: Coaching to get it right" »
eProductivity Equation: Mobility (for Notes & GTD)Monday, April 14th, 2008
As you learn more about GTD, you'll come to appreciate the value of getting everything out of your head and into a system you can trust no matter wherever you are and find a tool to support you. To do this, it's important that you equip yourself with tools that support you wherever you are; at home, the office, or on-the-go. I recommend at least one analog tool and often at least one digital tool, depending on your mobile information management needs. If you are someone that always has a computer available to you 24x7, then this section may not be useful. Lotus Notes does a great job of keeping information synchronized across distributed computers. On the other hand, if you are like me, you spend at least some part of your work day "out and about" and you need a way to keep your GTD lists and related information with you so that you can work from your lists, and manage your work.
Let's discuss the mobility aspect of getting things done while on the run...
Continue Reading "eProductivity Equation: Mobility (for Notes & GTD)" »
eProductivity Equation: Technology (for Notes & GTD)Friday, April 11th, 2008
We've touched on the productivity equation and we've looked at how methodology is the first component of the equation. Now, we'll look at the technology or tools that you use. Since you've already selected GTD as your methodology (a decision I wholeheartedly agree with) you now need to find a GTD implementation tool that will support you in the way that you work. From my email:
II. Choose your GTD implementation tool and master it
From 3x5 card to paper planner to MAC/PC to BlackBerry -- there are a range of solutions. The brilliance of GTD, I think, is that it's platform agnostic so you can manage using the GTD methodology just as well on a napkin or using custom software. What you need to find is a very good list manager, something that is easy to use, is easy to integrate with your existing workflow, and is fast. Most important, it must be something you can trust.
We discussed your use of Lotus Notes at your company. I think Lotus Notes is a powerful tool for personal knowledge and action management. It also happens to be the tool of choice for me and for the The David Allen Company. (Disclosure, The David Allen Company is an ICA client and David is a good geek friend - I designed and deployed their Notes collaboration infrastructure and have supported David and his team for the past 15 years, so I'm a little biased as to the power of Lotus Notes.) Many people are successfully using GTD with Lotus Notes in a variety of ways.
Continue Reading "eProductivity Equation: Technology (for Notes & GTD)" »
eProductivity Equation: MethodologyThursday, April 10th, 2008
Whether you are conscious of it or not, you have a methodology, a system, a habit for how you get your work done. Some methodologies, systems, and habits will be more productive than others; some can even be counter productive. I began this series by writing an email to help someone get started using Lotus Notes as his implementation tool for David Allen's Getting Things Done (GTD) methodology.
Over the years, I've learned several approaches to knowledge work but to date I have found none that made more sense and was more sustainable for me than GTD. It wasn't always this way. I used to find Stephen Covey's 7-Habits approach to be ideal and while I think it is an excellent approach for planning, I was unable to sustain it on a day to day basis and I often felt bad that my day to day actions were not getting me closer to my goals and vision. That's not to say that Covey's approach doesn't work - it does, but it was a great deal for me to maintain. Covey takes a top-down approach to productivity, starting with the desired outcome ("Begin with the end in mind") and then working down to daily actions that line up to support those goals. On paper that makes sense to me as the best way to go. In real life, however, it was hard to do, because, well, life happens. David Allen's approach starts at the bottom - clearing the decks -- so that you can think freely about the bigger picture stuff. I've been working with GTD since long before the GTD moniker and I can tell you that it is sustainable. What do I use today? A little of both. The foundation of my work style is built on the GTD methodology, while Covey has certainly influenced the values and planning aspects of my work and life.
OK, let's get practical: My advice for getting started with the GTD Methodology:
Continue Reading "eProductivity Equation: Methodology" »
The eProductivity Equation: KWP = M x T x KThursday, April 10th, 2008
In my eProductivity Seminars I always begin by introducing my eProductivity equation for knowledge worker productivity:
KWP = M x T x K
Put another way:
Knowledge Worker Productivity [or results] =
Methodology x Technology x Knowledge
That is, the outcome of any project will be influenced (one way or the other) by how well you use and apply (your methodology) your knowledge and tools to the problem at hand.
I believe GTD provides an outstanding framework for managing work productively - the methodology; I think that Lotus Notes can be a powerful tool for information, action, and knowledge management -- the technology. As far as what your knowledge... only you know that.
Think about how this equation applies to your knowledge work. What are your methodologies (defined or undefined)? What tools do you use?
How does what you know influence the work that you do?
Links to related posts in this discussion:
I. The eProductivity equation
"How can I ramp up quickly with GTD & Lotus Notes?"Wednesday, April 9th, 2008
Continue Reading ""How can I ramp up quickly with GTD & Lotus Notes?"" »