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Breaking down projects - how big/granular? Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
I've been using OmniFocus for a year now and have been implementing GTD for about as long - so not quite black belt yet ;-)

I'm often struggling with how much to break down bigger projects or outcomes. Should I make lots of smaller projects and/or subprojects? Should I organize as nested lists? Or just on one level? For example "Publish paper" can be broken down in several sub-projects, each independent and with its own discrete next actions. In this case "Publish paper" would be on a 20,000ft list, but not visible in my projects lists. Or it could just be one project with several possible next actions, but there could easily be many possible "next" actions in this way.

Any help and comments are most welcome!
 
You might consider using folders to group your actions. This helps you organize multiple projects that are part of a single life goal. I imagine I would have a folder for publish paper and then projects for the various areas of work that need to be done. If a project isn't actually actionable yet you can defer it using the start date and that way it's on your list but not bothering you yet.
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Troy Brandt
Omni Person
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by troyb View Post
You might consider using folders to group your actions. This helps you organize multiple projects that are part of a single life goal. I imagine I would have a folder for publish paper and then projects for the various areas of work that need to be done. If a project isn't actually actionable yet you can defer it using the start date and that way it's on your list but not bothering you yet.
Troy, thanks for the input. I've been using the folders to separate larger areas, like Duty Work, Family, Research, Sport, etc. but didn't consider this more granular use. One question in that respect: If I make "Publish paper" a folder and fill it with projects, when the paper is published how do I then remove the folder from view without deleting it?
 
Marking the folder as "dropped" (right-click on it in the sidebar to bring up a contextual menu, or use Edit->Status) will hide it from view in the Remaining projects view. Some of us have suggested that folders being limited to the two choices of "active" and "dropped" is a bit restrictive (or at times, misleading); if you agree, send your feedback (via Help->Send Feedback or email to omnifocus@omnigroup.com) to encourage further development.
 
Thanks! I never considered that.... shame on me. I will check how it works for me and if I think it can be improved I'll alert the ninjas!
 
I find the Active/Dropped terminology a bit restrictive. I often want to take a folder of projects and put the whole thing on hold and not see it at all unless I go looking for it. That doesn't say "dropped" to me if I'm just postponing the projects, or putting it in the deep freeze (using troyb's suggested scheme, why would I want to mark the completed paper "dropped"?) though it isn't a show-stopper by any stretch of my imagination. Not a big deal if you use folders to collect projects for areas of responsibility (those areas are likely to be relatively permanent), but more of a nuisance if you frequently use folders to collect related projects into one big project package which you then want to hide.
 
 


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