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Things user wants to move to OmniFocus but struggles with single contexts. Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
My contexts are
Active:
@Work, @JobApplication, @Home
@Mac, @PC, @Email, @Phone
@Research, @Study, @Thought
@Finance, @Bill, @YNAB (You need a Budget program)
@WebDesign, @Editing, @RWeaver (Rabid Weaver program)

Inactive:
@Waiting, @Someday, @Info

Last edited by devastat; 2011-05-31 at 11:46 AM..
 
Thanks for your reply Brian.

I'm a church minister. I'm responsible for 120 people and have around 20 people that I interact with on a weekly basis. Out of those 20, 10 people are folks I interact with daily.

An example of my situation is that I may need Jane to do a number of things. I need her to arrange some appointments for me, email me a list of maintenance jobs, and check how she's doing with the annual planner. This would look like this:

Call Jane to make appointments @call
Email Jane and ask her to send me a list of maintenance jobs that still need doing @email
Email Jane to check how she's doing with the annual planner @email

However, I may meet Jane in the course of the day at which point I want be able to see all of these tasks related to her.

Another example of this is if I needed to check what Jane's workload is I can check everything she's been assigned or will be.
 
thanks Devstat,

If I remember you are a convert from Things?

Any idea how to get people working in OF?
 
Hi,

You are correct I am a convert. I forgot to mention above that I do use people as context as well. For example @Will etc..

I don't have that many people delegates so it works out for me, but I do agree with you if you have to delegate a lot of tasks to people it does get tricky (as you cannot assign another context into the same task). I hope that omnigroup will create a people functionality in Omnifocus in the future.

However, if I would have to delegate lots of tasks to different people now, what I would do is I would add @Person into the beginning of the task and that would come up in search. Other option would be to create a folder for the person, but you will lose the relation of the task to the project..

Last edited by devastat; 2011-05-31 at 12:15 PM..
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by svsmailus View Post
Call Jane to make appointments @call
Email Jane and ask her to send me a list of maintenance jobs that still need doing @email
Email Jane to check how she's doing with the annual planner @email

However, I may meet Jane in the course of the day at which point I want be able to see all of these tasks related to her.

Another example of this is if I needed to check what Jane's workload is I can check everything she's been assigned or will be.
This is one of those "your mileage may vary" situations, of course, but I didn't get much mileage out of tracking calls and email separately - in my system, all those actions just go in the @jane context. Most of the time, I just need to talk to Jane to get the task done.

(In the rare cases where I do need to specifically carry out a task over the phone or email, I do what you did - include that information in the title of the email.)
 
The problem with putting them all in @jane is that I would then need to do that with all the other people I'm responsible for. It also means that if I want to see all the calls I need to make I have to go through all the Agenda contexts. This would be untenable for me as it would leave too much for me to remember and of course go against the GTD principal of not relying on keeping things in your mind.
 
Maybe I'm not understanding this but I actually find this fairly easy. If I have an action that is specific to a person I always start the action with the name of the person. Example:

John: send specs on project X...............email
John: ask him to define scope better.........call

Sue: discuss travel plans....................agenda

I give each action the correct context: call, email, agenda (if I want to talk about something in person), etc.

Then, if I need to find all actions relating to John I just do a search for John (I use last names if needed). That way I can see the actions in their correct context when I am "doing" since I like to work from a context perspective, but if I happen to see or call John I can grab everything at once by doing the quick search.
 
I've come to the conclusion that this is the only option. However, can you set up perspectives that will focus on only those people? It would then be easy to be able to create different perspectives of the top people I need to track.
 
Having large groups of people or tasks is my primary reason for choosing OF over Things after trying both and not the other way around...
There are, it seems, two strategies for your issue: 1) Searching for people or 2) Using context groups.

Before you try the first one, I would recommend to consider context groups. For people management, I have two groups: @waiting for (on hold, for tasks assigned to others) and @people (for tasks that can be done face to face, chat, email, phone, Facebook etc. etc.) These two groups have their own respective perspectives. Then, John will appear in two contexts, of course, but this I find safer than searching as misspelled names are avoided this way. This strategy is also brilliant for other groups, like @Mac : Home and @Mac : work. If I only need my Macbook, @Mac suffices, but if a secondary premise occurs, I can specify. Likewise, I will not bother to create a specific "@people : (name)" context before I am certain that the person will be frequently appearing in my workflow. In those cases I am more likely to use @call or @email (no names).

In my workflow I always consult my @people contexts before calling or mailing collaborators, whereas vendors and the like will not appear there at all, normally. Yes, I do have many contexts, but I find that certainly more manageable than having to think through possible tags to add to a task. But it must be stressed that this approach requires an active use of perspectives.

I could elaborate more, but I think the guru of this approach was whpalmer4, you could do a search for his posts (thanks for a lot of useful input, Bill!)

Good luck, anyway!
 
I have used Things and Omnifocus extensivelly. While I am not entirely into GTD, I have read all tutorials and have a fair understanding of how Omnifocus and Things work. Having multiple tags is nice, but I have found another way to deal with it: Folders!

Let me give you an example: In Things I have a tag named Heidi (my dog :) ) and under that another three: Health, Care and Food. If I want to buy some food for Heidi I would just create a task inside the area Heidi (which is also a tag in this example) and assign it the Food tag.
In Omnifocus I have a folder named Heidi and underneath it subfolders for each tag in Things. Under each folder there is a single items project where all relevant tasks reside.
I have struggled a lot in order to find out how to use contexts in a way that makes sense for me. I decided to create contexts to show the time and complexity of the task. I have created these contexts:
  • Someday
  • Waiting for
  • Delegated
  • Effort: High
  • Effort: Medium
  • Effort: Low
  • Milestones
  • Planned
  • Needs preparation
  • Trip required

Now to get to your example, I think I would just have a folder named Bob and underneath it maybe another folder named hardware store. I don't know if that is too complicated or if it is the best way to make Omnifocus work, but it works for me well..
 
 


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