I have just stumbled on this amazing web app and I am immediately falling in love with it: Trello. By far, it is the most intuitive, easy to use and easy to master tool for organizing not only your business work and projects, but also virtually anything. No fluff.
Okay, I got my attention grabbed by Trello. Firstly, it’s due to the ability for me to organize my work and see everything from one, single dashboard. I badly need this to manage all the madness related to my line of work.
What’s ‘madness’ in running websites? Well, if you portray running websites as working 4 hours a week and spend the rest of the day being a beach bum, well, you are reading too much Internet Marketing success stories 🙂
In reality, while some people making money online have the privilege of doing the above, most of us are working long hours. And yes, it’s often not because we have to, but we want to. Once you are into online business and get into the routines, it’s pretty much contagious: You can’t stop work because there are so many things you can work on your business.
For me, my daily work involved checking emails, writing articles, publishing articles, reading the web for trends, work on things that can be improved, put off fire when things go awry, collaborating with partners, clients, VAs, SEO, link building, traffic building, promoting articles, building sites, fixing client’s broken sites, managing finances, scheduling works,… the list can go on and on.
In short, it’s often overwhelming. And yes, I’ve already outsource some of those activities; and yes, I still got overwhelmed – especially when for some reasons one of my sites got hacked, copied, or scraped… oh, the agony!
I do use web tools to keep my work manageable, but a new productivity tool won’t hurt.
What is Trello? Why I fall in love with the tool?
Trello, in short, is a tool allowing you to organize anything quickly. At first, it looks like an app of to-do lists. But it’s far more powerful than that!
Unlike the typical to-do list or calendar app, you can add a wealth of details on every list. Think the list like a task “card”. On the front, it’s telling you what the “card” does. At the back, you can see the details of each “card”: You can label it, you can make a checklist, you can set a deadline, send/read comments, and so on.
Getting started is super-easy: You can set tasks need to be done, group them into categories (i.e. Ideas, To Do, Doing, and Done) and start becoming more productive, as you can see everything. Indeed, the categories can be viewed on a single dashboard so you can see what’s going on with your work. And here’s the magic: You can drag around items from one category to another easily.
Want move items from “To Do” to “Doing”? Just drag it. Finished doing? Drag it to “Done.” Discovered something weird, so you need to work on it? Drag it to “Doing” and update the item.
The above is just a very simple example. You can set ANY categories you want; organize not only your work but also your wedding; organize your work and life on the same dashboard to see how your work-life balance stacks up; anything.
But the best feature is yet to be mentioned: Trello allows you collaborate with your team members, friends, family… anyone.
Want to collaborate on a project with your client? Just add her into your dashboard and you can assign her to any list item (i.e. “Awaiting feedback from client.”) She can then update the item and write her comment.
Helping a friend organize his wedding? Add his friends and family to the app and start assigning tasks, while making sure things are running in an orderly fashion.
Want to do things on the go? Not only accessible via your web browser, Trello has apps that are accessible via Android, iPhone, iPad, and Windows 8 Tablet. Check out how things work with Trello iPad app from this video:
Very cool, I must say… and, oh, I forgot to mention: It’s free, and will always be free!
Looking into what Trello can do, I’m not sure whether your business needs a project manager or not. I mean, looking into the features (and I only see them in a glimpse!) the app practically does what a project manager do.
Of course, just like any other apps, this app is not for everyone. If your company runs a complex project requiring more tools, such as a Gantt chart to manage projects, I don’t think the app can give you that. But if you are like me, running multiple simple projects, it is THE tool for you.
So, I conclude that if you are an independent business owner, freelancer or someone who works on not-too-complex projects, Trello can offer you all the increased productivity you want.
‘care to give it a try? Are you a user? What do you think of the app? Please share your opinion!