Archive for July, 2007
It is these few days that I started to realise that I have a relentless list of to-dos that continuously exists to bug me. I just had a realisation that everything I do, everything I need to do, everything I want to do and everything that I might have to do all constitutes to this huge to-do list in my life.
Dry cleaning the clothes, updating the blog, exercising, preparing for meetings, doing posters, going to see the dentist, cutting my hair, going out with friends, planning for cambodia trip, getting in touch with the photo printing pple.. yada yada yada.
What I really need is a good to-do management system where I can immediately jot down the to-do when it pops into my mind and then make sure that I have a system that can help me follow up on these to-dos.Right now, I’m relegating it to many post-its stuck onto my office wall, scribblings in my organiser, post-its for home to-do’s stuck on the door of my walk in closet and for those really impromptu to-dos, I put it as a reminder on my handphone. Other than that, I’ll open web browsers and windows, keeping them open and I’ll attend to them when I’m free (and they automatically get ignored when my comp crashes :P). There’s simply just to many to-dos to remember and kill that I get lost in them sometimes.
For TDM, we manage our to-dos by putting it in a to-do list such as basecamp. But ultimately, people get lazy updating these to-dos. In human psychology, in order to entice or encourage a person to do a certain task, that task has to be as fuss free as possible, with clear instructions and tangible next step. These are the great kinds of to-dos that people love and will kill effectively.
A web2.0 webapp idea – anyone, feel free to take and develop it. If you’re done with it, let me know, I’ll be your first user:
- To-Do list with deadlines.
- Allowing the consumer to rank with a 2 axis comparison. Important, urgent, non urgent, non important. We can drag a task here and there in the chart to re-rank the priority of the task.
- Teach the consumer how to differentiate between a good task to do and a bad task to do.
- SMS updates to the to-do list. Cause when to-dos pop up, we might not always be with a computer.
- SMS reminders for important deadlines of to-dos. Perhaps it could be chargeable system, ie we can set the service to sms us our to-dos if we haven’t finished the to-do with the deadlines. And each sms is charged at 10cents each. This will be a great incentive for us to kill our to-dos before the sms is sent out.
- Printable To-do list of what we have entered on the system. IE, nicely formatted todo list that we can use a traditional pen to tick off the list.
- Shared To-Do lists! IE, a certain To-do can be shared amongst your friends and that To-Do can be killed the moment any of the stakeholders have done it! For eg. sending the clothes to the dry cleaner is a shared to-do between my boyfriend and I. If he does send the clothes to the cleaner and checks the shared to-do, my to-do is immediately killed! (And of course I get to track it)
- A tracking and report of the efficiency and efficacy in killing to-dos. Ie, how far apart from the deadline set did you kill the to-do. Is the to-do important, or unimportant etc.
- A repository of suggestions of to-do categories for users to choose from. Something like an inflated tagging system.
- Last but not the least, downloadable and syncable with calendar programs and handheld devices.
Just a quick top 10 wants for my to-do list.
Just thought that this would make an interesting food for thought entry on the good, bad and ugly of working in a family business.
- You get flexibility in the work timings.
- You get to see your family around you as everyone works as a team to forward the company.
- You get several perks like the car, free lunches and direct interaction with the major clients in the company
- You get to go on business trips aplenty as a representative of the company.
- Unrealistic expectations from the patriarch and matriarch like how you’re expected to know everything cause you’re the “brilliant kid” in your parent’s eyes.
- Pressure to excel much more than the average John and Jane doe.
- Doing the jobs where no man will venture. IE, if your staff decides to default on the job, you have to come in and play.
- Not having the choice of doing what you really want.
- Seriously, you have not much choice in dictating what you really want to do and you get thrown responsibilities at the whims and fancy of the boss.
- Family nuances can too often come into play.
- And you can’t quit.
It’s a love hate relationship and sometimes I do get tired. The above is not indicative of all family businesses but just the one that I am in.
Acknowledge the situation and change it. That’s the advice I have to myself.