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Organize Outlook without Add-On - Tips

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  • Organize Outlook without Add-On - Tips


    I live in Australia, and considering exchange rates, postage, etc, have decided not to buy the add-on for Outlook.

    I'd like to try to set a system up myself - basically get the same results as the Add-On but by setting it up myself and doing it more manually than automatically.

    If anybody has already done this themselves and has tips for me, I'd appreciate them.



  • #2
    If I'm not mistaken - there is already a white paper available. I don't have the link to it right now - it's the one that existed before the plug-in was launched!


    • #3
      Found the white paper - Any Good?

      I found the $10 PDF instructions on setting up Outlook. I looked at the sample and it looks worthwhile.

      I'm interested in whether people who have bought it recommend it or not.




      • #4
        GTD add-in

        Hi Trisha, I too live in Australia and have been using the GTD methodology for a few years now; back when I paid $55 for David Allen's book to be sent over to me from the US. I originally bought the white paper for $30 that described how to set up Outlook with the GTD structure. About eight months ago I purchased (downloaded) the software and I have been extremely pleased with it. Without giving a hard sell, I would recommend using the software; it is simple to install and sets up without much need for any intervention during or after the install. It is not a big program so it will not chew up too much of your ISP's traffic limits.


        • #5

          Hi fellow Aussie!

          I was BORN in Brisbane. Enjoying the oven-like weather? I was up in Brizzie just a week or so ago.

          Thanks for the recommendation. So you reckon it's worth $90 Aussie dollars?



          • #6
            Outlook Add-in

            Hi Trisha,

            Defintely worth the money. Even if you compare it with another Outlook add-in from Franklin Covey (that does not work), it is $60 less. Great to know there are a few GTD users down here.


            • #7
              Shopping list

              Thanks for the tip - I'll put it on my shopping list.



              • #8
                I would heartily recommend the Outlook Add-In. I didn't purchase the White Paper, but if it accomplishes the same outcome as the Add-In, and money is a concern, then get the White Paper for US$.

                I have hired a company to develop a new website for my company. I am testing the new site they created. Everytime I encounter a problem I send them an email so that the problem is documented. I use the Add-In to create a Waiting For task under the project Sell Profitably on the Web.

                The Add-In makes the entire process very smooth. My email is saved as a task. When we have our weekly conference call I just group my tasks by Project. I then scan all the tasks that begin with the developers name. At this week's call they were all impressed with how organized I was. They asked me how I did it. I told them about the Add-In and about GTD.


                • #9
                  By the's the link

                  Here is the link to the Outlook PDF



                  • #10
                    Originally posted by moises
                    I would heartily recommend the Outlook Add-In. I didn't purchase the White Paper, but if it accomplishes the same outcome as the Add-In, and money is a concern, then get the White Paper for US$.
                    The white paper shows you how to setup up views and folders in Outlook to implement a *basic* GTD/Outlook setup.

                    The Add-in gives you a lot more functionality. Since being forced to adopt Outlook by my company the past few months, I've been very glad that I spent the money on the add-in.

                    In addition to setting up the views for you, the plugin does things like simultaneously moving the email to the appropriate folder while creating the task for you (tied to the action category of your choice).

                    The extra GTD toolbar (installed by the plugin) is a constant visual reminder of the possible ways to handle this email (delegate, defer, action, file, etc.). Many emails are a 1 or 2 click process to take care of them and still feel comfortable that they are in your trusted system and will be reviewed at the appropriate times.

                    The biggest advantage, to my mind, is the fact that the email and the task created from the email are 'linked' by the plugin. When you pull up a task and delete it, it will prompt you to delete the linked items as well.

                    When I was implementing GTD via just the original white paper, the task and the email were not tied together this way. So when you completed a bunch of tasks and then went back to your @Actions Support email folder you would have to wade through a similar list again until you deleted the corresponding emails.

                    And if you moved a task from @Waiting For to another action context the email, of course, would not move from @Waiting For Support to @Action. The linking function performed by the plugin will keep your support emails 'synched' in the proper folder in accordance with the context used by the task.

                    The link created between emails, actions and events lets you switch rapidly back and forth between associated items. From a task choose "Open Mail". From mail choose 'Open Task'. For example, if I open an @Waiting For task and I see that I am waiting to hear by via email from this person (created by using the 'Delegate & Send' button at the time I sent the email) I can just hit the 'Open Mail' button and resend the email right then and there.

                    At any rate... I thought it was worth the money. At the beginning, I had some resistance to it but that was more an Outook issue in general. After a few months of tweaking Outlook and getting comfortable with views and filtering, I'm starting to think I can't live without the GTD add-in.

                    One caveat... the add-in comes with it's own white paper that is about twice as thick as the one for a manual setup. I would absolute recommend printing it out and reading it once or twice and then keeping it by your computer for the first few weeks as you settle into the process.

                    Well, that was a bit long-winded. Hope it helps someone, though.


                    • #11
                      I've installed the add-in an read the entire manual.

                      It definitely looks like it's great value. Don't know how I ever lived without it.



                      • #12
                        Outlook Add-In w/o e-mail

                        It seems from recent posts that the add-in in is especially valuable with an e-mail based office. I've been using the "white paper" version for quite a while and like it. I am only now about to fully implement GtD, and wonder if there is a strong case for the add-in when e-mails are not driving projects & NAs.