#iPadOnly book » Section 3 - There's an app for that! » Chapter 21 - Task management

Chapter 21 - Task management

Getting tasks done on the iPad gives you real satisfaction

Every day we need to get stuff done. There are gazillions of task managers out there and on the iOS platform this category is already very crowded. This is how we get our stuff done:

Michael is ‘eating his own dog-food’- Nozbe

“I’m the founder of Nozbe and it’d be really crazy not to use my own app when working on the iPad. I launched Nozbe more than 6 years ago and I’ve been using it ever since. When I switched to the iPad we didn’t have our own native iPad client, just a third party app and our web app.

Although it wasn’t the main reason, one of the motivations for me to work only on the iPad was to accelerate our Nozbe iPad (and mobile) app development and to ensure my team was working in the right direction. Fast forward 12 months and our iPad app is endorsed not only by me, but also by some of the most respected and productive people on the Internet, like Michael Hyatt (famous blogger, the best-selling author of the book ‘Platform. Get Noticed in a Noisy World’) and others.

Nozbe is an app that loosely follows the GTD (Getting Things Done) methodology coined by the productivity guru David Allen. It’s all about managing projects, finding your next actions in these projects, working in contexts and putting everything you need to do into your inbox.

There are a few things that stand out for me when working with Nozbe on my iPad.

First off - collaboration.

With Nozbe we want our customers to learn to ‘communicate through tasks’. Stop sending emails back and forth. Create projects, invite people there and add tasks to delegate work between each other. This is what I do - I work in my projects, respond to comments on tasks added by my team and communicate through Nozbe with my peers. We no longer send emails to one another. If we need something done, we just add a task in Nozbe, add a comment to it, delegate it to someone and it’s automatically pushed to them.

We believe in the ‘less conversation, more action’ approach. Thanks to the fact that we have the Nozbe web app, the iPhone and iPad apps and also native apps for most of the platforms out there (Android phones and tablets, Macs and Windows machines) - everyone can join the action. Even if they’re not working #iPadOnly like me.

Nozbe has a great ‘comments’ view where each time someone comments on one of the tasks within the projects I’m sharing with them, I can instantly see the comment and respond when necessary.

Second thing - the inbox

As with Evernote, Nozbe gives you a unique email address to use for forwarding emails. In this way, the subject of the email message becomes the task and the contents of the email message become the comment to the task. This also allows me to keep my email inbox and my ‘task’ inbox separate. When I see an email that is actually a task, I simply forward it to Nozbe and archive it.

Third thing - Nozbe for iPad is as good as the desktop version

Although we’re making Nozbe for iPad very touch-friendly and we have to work a lot in order to fit our full desktop Nozbe to the iPad’s screen in the most elegant way possible, we’re still getting it done. The iPad version is the fully-featured desktop version of Nozbe, tailored for the iPad. This was important for me - I wanted to have full Nozbe power on my best small computer ever.

As I work #iPadOnly and our entire team has different mobile devices, we keep making Nozbe better. It’s our hub for communication and collaboration and getting things done. We’re releasing a new Nozbe version each month on all the platforms.”

Augusto is the Omnifocus user:

“I have invested hours learning how to do magic with Omnifocus and so much time and energy into making it my platform of choice that it is not really funny anymore (maybe not even productive). It’s a really great and powerful app. Do I think it is perfect? The answer it is no.

Actually, I believe that Omnifocus only works when you live on a Mac and iOS devices. If you interact with other platforms, make the jump and use Nozbe; you will find that you will be much more productive.

Omnifocus had a really steep learning curve; it took me years to do what I can do on Omnifocus. Let’s be clear, I did the same thing when my platform was on Outlook, I had macros and many more things that would allow me to do things other people didn’t think were possible, so it is not that I geek out exclusively in Omnifocus. Whenever I move to a new platform, it is always the same process. What I think is really important is to get to know the tool you use daily very well. Too often, people don’t dedicate the time to learn their app and being proficient with it would make them ten times more productive.”

We collaborated through Nozbe for this book project.

As we knew there would be many tasks related to our project, we decided to use Michael’s platform and created several #iPadOnly related projects in Nozbe. We both enjoyed ‘communicating through tasks’ there and commenting on our progress.

Augusto’s perspective on collaboration in Nozbe:

“I never used Nozbe as my main platform. I tested it when Michael created it and I applaud Michael’s success with it. I have always recommended Nozbe to people that want to access their task from any platform because I know how passionate Michael is on the subject of platforms and productivity.

When we decided to write this book, we agreed to maintain the book project in Nozbe. I had no problems doing that because Omnifocus had no way to collaborate with others and I was aware that Nozbe did. I was in for a surprise and a treat.

I love Omnifocus, but for the first time, I have been considering to move just because of this feature. I have been using this book as an excuse to give Michael feedback on those things that I really like about Nozbe and those things that are a must for me.

As much as I may like Omnifocus, the collaboration approach in Nozbe works extremely well. It was not only Michael, we worked with other people on Michael’s team and it was all easy to do through Nozbe.

This was something I didn’t anticipate when we joined forces for this book. But it is exactly the collaboration part of Nozbe that has me thinking of the possibilities of having my own team in the future to use Nozbe as our ‘getting things done’ platform. Even as a solo writer you’re never actually solo. You have editors, agents, designers and other people working with you. You collaborate. And this is where Nozbe shines.”

Next Chapter: Chapter 22 - Mind Mapping

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