If you haven’t used Trello before, it’s an amazing way to organize, delegate, manage all of the tasks for yourself and your team. It is like have a white board that you put post it notes on, BUT you can organize by topic, project, team, etc. It is the best possible “To Do” list that has so much more functionality. We invite clients to boards we create for them to track projects we are working on for them or with them.
We have a paid version for some of the awesome “Power Ups”, but the free version is also very good and a great way to start seeing the benefits.
Be Visual: If you can See it you can Be it!
The idea of Trello is to create boards. On these boards you can create different lists, and within each list you can create individual cards. Below is a picture to explain what I mean…
You can attach all sorts of useful information to each card including links, images, descriptions, checklists, labels, deadlines – there are tons of features. You can move these cards along your boards to help organize your workflows and processes. What this example does not show is you can give each board a background like a photo so you can distinguish between boards. An image to motivate you. You can also add covers to each card to use visuals to identify the purpose of the column or the card itself. It is a very visual tool and I love that about it.
Organize, Prioritize, Track, Succeed
I use several boards. Every staff member has a “To Do” List board. We have a Firm task Board with everything we want to do for the firm. Columns include titles such as: Apps we want to look at, Blog Posts we are considering, Our Marketing Calendar, etc. We also have board for specific things like Tax Season 2021 where our columns are titled: Client Docs in house, Return in Process, Waiting on Client Info, Ready for Review, Waiting for Payment and Done and Out The Door. We move a client card from list to list as appropriate. Inside each client’s card is a check list that includes all the steps of our process from receipt of docs to review and filing to how we deliver returns to clients.
You can assign a deadline date to any card – it could be next week or next year. You can sort boards by deadline, move cards up and down the list. It is extremely easy and user friendly.
I know someone who has a list for each day of the week. Then has an automation set up so that when a deadline is coming up, a card will automatically be moved to the ‘Weekly Tasks’ list.
Manage and Park Ideas and Projects
With Trello, I can easily see what work I have to do. I am be able to clearly see all the work I have and can easily prioritize or assign to a team member. I also love it because I can use it as a parking lot for anything that comes into my head that I can’t deal with right now, but want to keep it somewhere. I post an idea to a card, attach any URLs or notes so that I can remember why I wanted to address this topic. It takes all the clutter out of my head and makes me so much more productive while not losing ideas, projects, concepts that I just can’t keep well in my mind.
There are so many useful features that you can use for each card as well. You can assign labels, attach team members to certain tasks and leave comments for each other. You can create templates so team members use the same format if you wish for things like their weekly planner board.
They can use the same process to manage their workflow and I can easily see what tasks they are working on and add new ones for them. If there is a task on my board that I don’t think it’s necessary for me to do, I can add some notes and instructions and move the card onto someone else’s board for them to work on.
Integrations and Apps
My recent find was the integration with Outlook. If I get an email that is something I need to address, but not at the moment, I have the integration that allows me to add an email directly to a Trello board with the email text and any attachments. That is a game changer for me to be able to take an email, park it on a board and then delete it. Other integrations with Slack and others make this a powerful tool I could not live without now.
It’s a brilliant system and an incredibly powerful tool – I highly recommend you check it out if you haven’t used it before.