Bruce Lill September 3 2009 09:35:23 AMeProductivity is an update to the Lotus Notes mail file that will help you be more productive. IT's based on Dave Allen's Getting Things Done methodology, often referred to as just GTD. You can get more information at the eProductivity web site. If you want to purchase then go here: Tell a friend and save on the price!
I won a copy of the software in a Twitter contest by a long time GTD user and blogger Paul Gardner (http://paulgardner.info/).
As a Lotus Design Partner, the biggest problem I had was updating my mail template to use eProductivity as I normally use the latest beta version of the template for testing. I may have to convert to the stand-alone version of the eProductivity template for web access, as I really like iNotes 8.5.1 with the federated calendars.
This is what I went through as I tried to be more productive. It's more of a mind-set change then anything else. You could read Dave Allen's book and use tasks, but this software does make it easier to covert to GTD.
Day one: install the new design on my mail file and try to use it without reading the manual. It's based on projects and actions (a to-do or task) that you setup. I did learn that you can't use categories that match your mail folders!. Since I use categories for calendar and to-do all the time, this caused some problems.
For example I have a category called Travel for marking the tasks and travel times. I also had a mail folder (not the word HAD) called travel that I would place all emails dealing with travel into. After I updated my design, I tried to put an email into the Travel folder and a new action document popped up that contained the contents of the email. This was not what I intended. I renamed the folder to Travels and now it works like before.
After a month, I'm getting used to it. So far the only problem I had was when I went and used my laptop. When I opened my email it asked to update my mail file like it did on the desktop when opened for the first time. I said yes and then found that all preferences, both eProductivity and Notes Mail preferences were cleared out. I tried to update the workstation preferences and replicate them up, tried to copy the mail fiel from the workstation to the laptop directly, but nothing helped. I had to enter all preferences again. It took 45 minutes to get back where I was.
I have to admit now that I haven't had this occur again and the update to the latest eProductivity release went with no issues except my folders.
Eproductivity updates all your folders to include the new action buttons. This isn't bad for most Notes Users, but I'm a developer with lots of years of development experience. I HATE the normal Notes mail inbox view. I want mail new to old, don't want to scroll to the bottom! Yes you can set sort but it doesn't work the same way. I also modify my inbox to have the emails categorized by Month and week ending date. I know you sent me an email last week, I hate searching for it. Now I click on last week and it's there.
The only reason the year is also included was that with eProductivity you can only replace the folder design with your inbox, calendar, trash,Alarm and rules format. So I update the inbox design then update all folders. It's that or change the design of the dialog box to include the ($Default) folder design.
Normally my inbox was Month/week ending date and the other folders were all by Year/Month. Hey it made it easy to cleanup the mail. In the archive I could just get rid of the older emails. My mail file is 520 mb, that's including the Archive! I have made use of Customized document libraries to hold information on customer projects, admin notes and developer notes. I also make use of the Personal Notebook (the old journal).
I'm now getting used to the eProductivity Reference db for some of the stuff like License #s. I like the ability to add additional dbs to the mail navigator and added my personal notebook there. Since it syncs to my phone, it's makes it easy to put things like travel info, directions and meeting notes.
I'm still fine tuning the categories and settings as I learn more. The support is phenomenal , you just click on feedback and you will get a reply within a day. I've just started to read the help and watch the videos.
I'm using it to track my work with the Lotus Domino R8.5 Deployment Redbook. The next entry will be how that worked out. The Today view is great with the list of meetings and actions that you need to work on. I'll go it to these the next time.
So go get more productive.
- Comments