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PostPosted: Mon May 28, 2007 5:29 pm 
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Joined: Wed May 02, 2007 1:30 am
Posts: 14
Location: Austin, Texas
Thinking Rock really helped manage a difficult situation. Two months ago, I knew that I needed to get organized or I was going to collapse under my workload. I fill a function in my company similar to that of a CTO (except that I'm not an executive). My job is focused on evaluating processes and tools, planning new products, marketing, and helping the company stay current with industry standards and best practices. There is a lot of variability in my projects, with no clear boundaries, so I'm what David Allen (following Peter Drucker) calls a "knowledge worker."

After we launched a new product about five months ago, my workload really intensified. After three months of scrambling constantly and barely keeping up, I knew that I had get my projects under better control, and I picked up David Allen's Getting Things Done. It was exactly what I was looking for. Someone online (softtechmatrix) recommended Thinking Rock, and I was all set up.

I LOVED the way the "process thoughts" interface guided me through the GTD processing decisions. No flowcharts to memorize, nothing complicated - just the critical GTD decisions about work. The purpose, vision, & brainstorming fields on the projects really helped me nail down exactly what I was trying to achieve, and how I planned to get them done.

When I was finished processing my stuff, I had more than 300 actions in TR. It was overwhelming to see how much work I had been trying to manage on my own. But better than that, my work was now organized into a heirarchy of projects, and for the FIRST TIME since I moved into this position, I had a comprehensive picture of my projects how they all related. This really helped me visualize my work and its strategic direction. It helped me to better define my role in the organization, and it came from the bottom up (built from the actual work that I was doing), so I knew that it was real and accurate.

Using TR, I was able to present my projects to my boss in a more organized fashion. I walked him through my entire workload, so that we could prioritize my projects and delegate. He could hardly deprioritize anything - almost all of my projects were mission-critical. There were only a few areas that I could delegate outside my team. So instead he decided to give me more resources. My team expanded from two people to five, and we are in the process of bringing another person onboard as well.

TR made the difference between me complaining that I was overloaded (which was ineffective) and being able to SHOW my boss exactly how many projects I was carrying so we could make smart decisions and do something about it (which was very effective!).

That's a big accomplishment, and TR made a big difference.


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2007 7:07 am 
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Joined: Sun Jan 07, 2007 1:48 pm
Posts: 221
Location: Netherlands
Hi Dan,

Great read. I'm very happy to have you hooked up with TR and now to see that it made this big impact on your working environment 8)

Hans Peter.


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2007 9:34 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jul 05, 2006 11:11 am
Posts: 1517
Location: Sydney
Thank you Dan. It is very rewarding for us to read how TR helps users.

_________________
Claire
ThinkingRock Analyst and Tester


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 06, 2007 6:12 am 
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Joined: Sun May 20, 2007 6:44 am
Posts: 5
Location: Helsinki, Finland
Hi,

A somewhat similar situation...

danyoung wrote:
Using TR, I was able to present my projects to my boss in a more organized fashion. I walked him through my entire workload, so that we could prioritize my projects and delegate. He could hardly deprioritize anything - almost all of my projects were mission-critical. There were only a few areas that I could delegate outside my team. So instead he decided to give me more resources.


With TR it became obvious to me that I was in deep trouble with the amount of tasks and the given schedule. However, my current project schedule is very tight, my job requires technical knowledge that is very hard to come by (licensing, NDA:s, bureaucracy etc) and the learning curve is quite steep, so there is really no way to delegate to anyone.

As requirements and requests arrive, it's now easy to talk them over with my boss and prioritize them.

danyoung wrote:
TR made the difference between me complaining that I was overloaded (which was ineffective) and being able to SHOW my boss exactly how many projects I was carrying so we could make smart decisions and do something about it (which was very effective!).


Here's where I'm still struggling. I'm using the delta version of 2.0 and reports are still being worked on. Unless I can get my team/boss to actually open up my TR file, I can only improvise a short list of tasks.

However, what has happened, is that I've learned to say "no" to internal requests more often. A single glance at the actions screen is usually enough to make a go/postpone/no-go decision with my colleagues, even without the explicit approval of my boss.

Regards,

Petri


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