The start of the New Year is a time when we formulate our goals and identify areas of development for the year ahead. To accomplish these goals, it is essential to have the correct tools that will support the journey. Perhaps one of the greatest tools for organization and time management is the planner- a tool that serves as our daily compass. However, with so many planners to choose from, how do you select which format is best? We asked Kristin Kopp for her expertise on planner planning!
Kristin Kopp is the Director of Operations for Scaling Up Coaches, a global coaching organization serving entrepreneurs and their executive teams. In this role she manages many projects and an amazing team so being organized is key. She admits to loving all things related to planning and has tried many different planners over the years. Her Kolbe score is 6871.
Why is having a planner so important for the busy professional?
I believe a planner is the place to capture important details about personal and professional lives. Most people are managing work and home life daily, since COVID that has even shifted to an hourly basis, so having a way to keep all aspects organized can help with both productivity and balance.
There are so many options of planners available that are more effective for different professional personalities.
What style planner do you suggest…
For the creative and unstructured professional and why?
Many planners are geared towards those who are creative and include space/pages for doodling or free writing within the calendar aspects. One such planner is the 90x Goal Planner. Another creative approach may lend itself to capturing other more personal aspects like feelings, affirmations and meditations. The Desire Map Planner has a unique approach to defining daily and weekly goals and tasks around key feelings the individual has deemed important in various areas of life: work, relationships, wellness, etc.
For the very detailed and organized professional and why?
There are a wide variety of planners that capture all kinds of information from goals to hourly schedules. I have found that having multiple views (daily, weekly,hourly) of time allows for an individual to capture a lot of details and keep themselves organized “at a glance.” I also suggest for this type of professional that a corresponding place for meeting/call notes is important, whether it is a separate journal, phone app or notes pages within the planner itself. Some examples of this style of planner are Full Focus Planner and ink + volt.
For the very busy and hectic agenda professional and why?
For those looking for a planner to help simplify their busy and hectic life, I would recommend a planner that has a system that supports its use. For example, there are companies that now have corresponding planner accessories that can help with visual cues, blogs on productivity and prioritizing, notebooks, etc. Having a clear way to track appointments and other daily/weekly/monthly activities may be a top priority for this professional. More importantly, this person will want to set aside time to preview their day, week, and month on a regular basis. Finding a planner that supports this practice and can capture details can be a great resource.
What is your personal planner of choice and why?
My preference over the past 18 months has been the Full Focus Planner system by Michael Hyatt. What I like about it is that it is a quarterly planner that has a full system supporting its use. There are corresponding books, videos, Facebook groups and a podcast about how to maximize use. Each planner is for one quarter of the year and captures quarterly goals, monthly/weekly/daily schedules, notes and has additional journals for notes. I have found that the weekly review and previews are very helpful in improving my productivity during the week. I started using this planner in a basic way and have been able to grow and customize my use of it as I’ve become more focused on various aspects of planning.
What are some physical components to consider when selecting a planner?
Be mindful of these factors when choosing what planner is best for you; size, paper quality, lay-flat feature and layout. Check out this link featuring some great planner options to consider.
Get planning! 2021 is going to be an epic year!
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