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Contexts = @ the person, or done by the person? Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
I'm finding that my people contexts have a different action meanings depending on the person.

For my boss, @Andrew usually means a task for me that I need to run by him when we are together, or something I have to do with him.

For a particular subordinate however, the context "Joel" is a list of tasks needing delegation to him (possibly at the next team briefing), or tasks that I am waiting to confirm that he has completed.

How do others handle this shift between "at someone" and "by someone"?

I could have 2-3 contexts for each person. e.g.

1. @ Joel
2. Done By Joel
3. Waiting for Joel

But this would start to give me quite a long and unwieldy context list once a number of people are added.

I suppose it is a result of using Omnifocus not only to do tasks, but to track tasks that are being done by other under my responsibility.
I just use one context for all three types of actions. Either it's a conversation I need to have with them, something I need to do for them and report back on, or something I've asked them to do and which I should probably check back on before too long.
Brian when you use the context as a "waiting for/check back on" do you do anything further to stop that actions being in your face when you can't yet do anything about it.

I mean like setting it to be due at a future date so it doesn't show as available?

I use a context, @Joe, for things that I need to communicate with Joe about. If I'm waiting on Joe for something, the action goes in my single Waiting For context, but is written "From Joe, TPS reports".

I'll often put a _start_ date on the Waiting For item if I want it off my radar for awhile. I'll sometimes put a _due_ date on the item if we have an agreed upon due date. During my weekly reviews I look at all my Waiting For items and decide whether I need to add an @Joe item to follow up on the incomplete, delegated task.

So Curt you modify the title of the Action so you can see who it refers to.

That seems like a reasonable way to do it - just gives you the one "waiting for people" context.
I view my contexts more in terms of how or where I will be communicating with others. In other words, to use your example of your boss Andrew, I would ask myself how I will communicate on a particular issue with him: By phone? In person? Or via email? Then that becomes my context for that action. Re: my in-person contacts I have a PEOPLE context with sub-contexts of the names of those with whom I communicate on a regular basis.

As for waiting fors, here's how I handle them:

Let's say that I have an action with a "Phone" context. I make that phone call on the prescribed date, but now need to wait for something back from the person I called in order to move the project forward. I briefly write down a summary of the call in the note section under that "Phone" action, and then change the context to "Waiting For" with a due date of, say, three days out, changing the action to something like this: "WF c/b from Joe." (Translation: Waiting For a callback from Joe.) Now, three days later when I'm in context view I can readily see that a red badge next to my "Waiting For" context indicates that I have one item due. I click on the "Waiting For" context, and there it is, a recap of that phone call of three days ago. Since I haven't yet received whatever it was I was waiting for, I now have three choices: a) Call that person to follow-up; b) Bump the due date forward another two or three days (or as Curt suggested use both a start and due date so I don't see it until I need to); or c) Ignore it and let the action sit there in red until I do something with it.
Ah, people... They are a whole new category and they come singular and plural and need to be considered within many contexts. If "people" existed in OF under their own separate field allowing multi entries, then we could find all actions for given people in any context. Waiting for them, calling them, setting up notes for the next meeting with them, not forgetting what I needed to ask them when they are available for a short moment. Please OmniGroupers, give me people. They don't have to link to my contacts list (although aliasing to this would be nice).

My current work-around is to add people's names or initials (= less, faster typing, this is where aliasing to contacts would be useful) to the notes field, then search by the name/initial.

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