Todoist sections are a game-changer in how I organise myself

Sections in Todoist help

For the last five or six years, I’ve been using a combination of Todoist and Trello to manage my various to do lists and projects but since Doist introduced Todoist Foundations last year, I’ve had to revise how I think about how I organise myself.

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Instead of focusing on better estimates…

This tweet from John Cutler has been challenging me recently:

Instead of focusing on making ‘better’ estimates, focus on:

  • working smaller
  • integrating frequently
  • exposing work to users/customers sooner
  • testing assumptions earlier
  • limiting dependencies
  • less fragile code
  • limiting handoffs

Your estimates will improve.

Why?

Why do we focus so much on estimates?

We focus so much on estimates because we want certainty, because we want to feel like we are in control and are directing progress.

Development teams want to know how much work they think can be done during a sprint. Management wants to know when new features will be finished, when deadlines will be met. Customers want to know when they can get this new functionality.

And so we develop systems that give us a sense of security even though they may be false.

But human beings are terrible at estimating. Just read this article on Wikipedia about the planning falacy to see just how much.

Psychologists Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky explained the planning fallacy by suggesting that planners focus on the most optimistic scenario for any task, rather than using their full experience of how much time similar tasks would take.

Curiously, when asked to estimate how long something will take, people will generally underestimate how long they would take and overestimate how long they think others would take to do the same task. In other words, people will consider the best case scenario for themselves and the worst case for others.

Originally posted on my work internal blog.

Make Time

Make Time: How to focus on what matters every day

Although I now subscribe to the 12 Week Year approach to planning , one of my overall goals for 2020 is to read more.

I’ve got the year off to a good start reading Make Time: How to focus on what matters every day by Jake Knapp and John Zeratsky, the team behind the popular Sprint: How to Solve Big Problems and Test New Ideas in Just Five Days.

Continue reading Make Time