231 From Trello to ClickUp and Beyond

From Trello to ClickUp and Beyond


Are you constantly on the hunt for the best tools to keep your life and business organized? Well, you're in luck because, in today's episode, I dive deep into my top five go-to tools for staying on track, both personally and professionally.

From digital calendars to trusty paper planners, I'll walk you through why I swear by these tools, how I use them, and where they fit into my overall time management and productivity strategy.

In this episode, I'm covering:

  • The top five tools I use to stay organized in both my personal life and business
  • How I use a digital planning tool and my physical planner
  • The significance of project management tools for businesses

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Hey there, all right. If I had a penny for every time someone has asked me what tools do you use to stay organized, Megan? Well, I could probably retire today and live very comfortably Now. There are a lot of different tools that I use to run the business, like, for instance, there are software tools I use to get this podcast going right, but that's not the tools that most people are interested in. Usually, they're interested in the tools that I use to stay organized, both in planning and in information. So that's what we're really going to be diving in here today are the top five tools. One of them is a physical tool. The other four are various forms of software or digital tools that I'm going to be sharing with you how I use them, why I use them and where they fit in my overall kind of top time management, organization and productivity framework. So let's go ahead and dive in.

Welcome to the WorkLife Harmony podcast. I'm your host, Megan Sumrell. I'm the creator of the top program and top planner teaching all things time management, organization and productivity for women. I'm also a mom and wife and, just like you, I'm juggling hashtag all the things while running multiple businesses and a family. Guess what? You don't have to feel constantly overwhelmed, exhausted and stressed out. There is another way. When you have the right systems and tools to plan and manage your time, you can live a life of harmony. This is your show to learn from me and other amazing women how to master your time, planning an organization to skyrocket your productivity so you can have WorkLife Harmony. If you're ready to stop feeling overwhelmed, this is the show for you, and if you're new here, I'd love to get you started with my WorkLife Harmony assessment. All you have to do is DM me on Instagram, at Megan Sumrell, with the word Harmony, and my team will send it right over. Well, hello there. Welcome back to WorkLife Harmony.

I get asked all the time, all the time, what tools do I use to stay organized, both with business and with personal, and so I thought this would be a great opportunity for me to come in and share with you today the top five tools that I use to stay organized in both my personal life and business. And what I really want you to hear as I'm going through these tools today is this I am always, always, always trying to streamline and reduce the number of tools that I use, meaning where possible. I don't want to use one tool to stay organized in business and a different tool to stay organized with the rest of my life. Why is that? Well, as a business owner, as a mompreneur, where I am juggling family and everything that life has along with this business it is up to me every day to determine how I'm spending my time, which is very different than when I was in a corporate setting. When I was in a corporate setting, I used different tools for work than I did for my life, because those two lives didn't cross Meaning. Every day when I woke up, I didn't have the choice of saying am I going to spend my time on work? Today? They owned a certain portion of my time and oftentimes you're required to use the tools that they want. But as an entrepreneur, I want to make sure that ultimately, the end game here is to be able to see what are all the things competing for my time, because I am in control of my time so that I can streamline those, be as productive as possible and make really good choices about how I'm spending my time. So today I'm going to be sharing with you.

Now I use a lot more tools for my business, but I want to share with you today the top five that are all around keeping the business organized, maintaining productivity and all around planning. So, first and foremost and these are in no particular, it's not like one is more used than the other these are the top five that I am in and out of all day long. So first is Google Calendar. Now I choose to use Google Calendar because I use the Google suite of tools, but you can replace Google Calendar with iCal or Outlook or whatever online calendaring system that you're using, and for me, I use this both for work and for personal.

With the main, there's kind of two main reasons why or purposes that Google Calendar serves for me. Number one is it is a place for me to acknowledge appointments In the digital age that we are in right now. So often, even when I go in and schedule an orthodontist appointment for my daughter, they send me an email with a link for me to put that onto my Google Calendar. So I think almost everyone is using some form of a calendar like that. So it is capturing appointments as they are being made. It is also where you know sometimes I bring guests here onto this show, right Well, when they go to book a time to record with me. I am sharing out availability. That shows up on my Google calendar, which leads to the second subtle way in which I use this. Now, inside of my top program, remember, we learned weekly and monthly planning mastery, and one of the steps in here is learning how to see and acknowledge our unavailable time. Meaning when do we need to acknowledge that we are not gonna be in typical productivity mode? So my Google calendar is also where I go and block off any time as quote unavailable where I do not want people to be able to book time with me. Okay, so that really plays a critical part for me in making sure I don't get overbooked and overscheduled.

Now let's talk about the second tool, because it's similar-ish to Google calendar, but it's where the actual kind of rubber meets the mode for me in terms of details around my time, what I'm doing and when I'm doing it, and for me, I am still a paper planner gal. Now, yes, I just told you that I use Google calendar, but they each serve different purposes, and I actually have done an entire episode here on the Work Life Harmony podcast where I talk about how I make sure I'm not duplicating everything between digital and paper, but I use the top planner. This is the planner that I created, that I sell, and this is where I do all of my detailed weekly and monthly planning. So, ultimately, all week long, I am looking at my top planner every day and it is telling me what I should be doing and when I should be doing it. All right. So that's the second tool that I use, and that is for both personal and business. The one planner encompasses all parts of my life, because there are days where maybe it is an entire day where I'm not doing anything for the business and I'm doing everything for all the other roles that I play in my life.

Now the third tool that I wanna talk about. This is one that really is just a business-facing tool, and it is something that any entrepreneur should have. One of these tools and it is a project management tool, and the one that I use here at the pink B is called ClickUp. Now, I've got links for all of these in the show notes, so if you are interested in checking those out, you can do so there. Now there are kind of four project management tools that seem to be at the top of what a lot of people are using these days. Trello is one. I'm gonna talk about that in a minute.

Then the three that are really compete for most businesses right now tend to be ClickUp, mondaycom and Asana. They all pretty much have the same feature functionality. I have played with and tested out all three. My recommendation is always ClickUp. I think it is the easiest to set up. I think it's visually the easiest to use as well.

All right, so where does ClickUp fit in? Well, as a business owner, I need to have a place where I can see every single task that is happening for the business, who is doing it and when it is getting done. I now have three team members here at the PinkBee Plus myself, so every single day, any of us can log in and see who is doing what on any given day. Now ClickUp is also where we do all of our strategic planning for the business, so there's a dashboard in ClickUp that shows what our quarterly plan looks like, what does our annual plan look like? We also are able to track all of our KPIs key performance indicators there in ClickUp, and it's also an onboarding tool for the business as well, and it houses all of our SOPs, which stands for Standard Operating Procedures the way that ClickUp is built out and used by our team and I need to give a massive shout out to my COO, our Chief Operational Officer, terence Owa. She really manages and maintains ClickUp and the way it works for our entire organization is we practice what we teach. Meaning the goal is that everybody is spending their time on any given day for tasks that aren't due right now, meaning we are not working in reactive mode. Now, as a business owner, there are always tasks that have to be handled a day of, especially when you have customers you need to be doing support. So there are some of those. But we use ClickUp as a way to follow the exact annual, quarterly, monthly and weekly planning process that I teach inside the top program. We use those same principles and exact same processes for how we plan and manage the business. So anybody on the team can come into ClickUp and we can easily see what everybody is doing, how they are doing it. Now I believe in ClickUp so much I actually created a ClickUp 4-top mini course as well as something that people can check out when they get familiar with the planning systems to see how we use this inside of the business. So that is the third tool. I would say that's probably the one that gets activity in it the most for the business.

Now I want to tell you about tool number four, which is very similar to ClickUp, and it is Trello I mentioned. Trello is another project management tool. Now, the reason why I wanted to mention this here is because I still use Trello for a couple of things. And I also wanted to mention Trello because when I was a solopreneur meaning it was just me running the PinkBee I didn't have anyone else on my team, which all business owners start there typically. Instead of using ClickUp, I used Trello because it is another project management tool, and I used Trello for a very long time to manage everything inside of the PinkBee, and the only reason I moved out of Trello and into ClickUp to manage the business is I personally think Trello gets a little clunky when you start growing your team and it requires a lot of kind of building in automations that come just out of the box with ClickUp. So anyone who's just starting out in business, if you're a solopreneur and you're looking for a project management tool to get started, I usually recommend Trello, especially if you feel like you're not very tech savvy, because it is so easy to set up and use and because of that, I still use Trello for personal reasons.

So types of information that I use Trello for is I have a Trello board where I store recipes that people either send me or I find out on Pinterest that I haven't tried yet. It's also where I go in to manage all of my gift tracking. So everybody that I like to purchase gifts for all of that is housed in Trello with information about them, dates of birthdays, anniversaries, etc. When I was in full homeschooling mode, trello is what we used to manage everything that was going on within homeschool. It's also where I go to keep lists of recommendations. So as people give me book recommendations, movie recommendations, tv shows, etc. Trello is where I go to do that. Now I still use Trello for the business in a couple of ways.

I think Trello is a much better brainstorming platform than ClickUp is visually, and if you are a student inside my top program or if you've been to Planapalooza, you have seen me where I will pull up Trello and show you how I use it. Anytime I'm brainstorming or project planning or trying to figure out how I'm going to get a big project done, because it to me. If you've never seen Trello. It's kind of like having Post-it notes all over a wall and then you get to move them around and get them all organized. So, again, if you are brand new, you're a solopreneur and you're looking for a project management tool to just get you going, trello can be a great place to start. And I actually use Trello even when I had my first contractor with the business, so there were two of us in Trello for a long time before we moved over to ClickUp.

Now, tool number five for me personally and with the business, is Google Drive. Google Drive is our storage facility, meaning any information that's not, you know, a specific to do or task, because that lives in a project management tool, lives in Google Drive. So some examples photos so, like, all the photos that we use are stored out there on Google Drive and then I can share it with the team members that need access to it. Documents, any PDFs, those kinds of files, all of those live in Google Drive. If you remember when I was talking about ClickUp and I mentioned that we have our standard operating procedures there, well, a lot of those is short videos showing how to do things. I keep all the videos backed up in Google Drive so that way, you know, we can swap them out easily and just have storage there as well. Now, personally, I also use Google Drive as a place to manage stuff at home. So you know, for instance, our family budget is built out on a Google Sheet that lives in our, you know, private family Google Drive, so that my husband and I can access it together and we're not sending files back and forth.

So I'm going to recap again the five tools that the top tools that I use to stay organized, both personally and professionally Our Google Calendar, my top planner. Clickup as a project management tool for the business, trello as a maybe I'll call it life management, a project management tool personally. And then belkiad, my best friend Melissa Cleaner. Обновь Google Drive for storing information. So those are the top five that I use. Now, notice the only time you heard me talk about well, this tool for business but this one for personal when I was talking about Google Drive and Trello as two different project management tools.

Right Now, I'll be honest with you if I didn't teach Trello I always love to teach people Trello I have a ton of it inside of my top program I could let go of Trello and just use ClickUp. I could absolutely do that. The reason why I maintain both is because I always want to stay on top of the latest and greatest of what's going on in Trello so that I'm able to support all of the students that choose to use it. It's not required to learn the top framework, but it's a tool a lot of people test out. So you could be in a position where you only use Trello or you only use ClickUp and, honestly, that is what I ultimately recommend.

Right Is less is more when we're thinking about the tools that we are using. So I don't have a storage place for work and a separate storage piece of software for personal right. I use Google Drive for both, I have my Google Calendar for both, I have my top planner for both, and that is what I absolutely encourage anybody and everybody to do is to streamline the number of tools that you use. Now, as I mentioned at the beginning of this, if you are a W2 employee working for a company, they usually will dictate the tools that you need to use. So maybe you work in an office that's a fully Microsoft office and you're using Outlook and you're using OneNote, but for your family, maybe you're using the Google suite of tools. That can absolutely happen. I see it happen a lot. I personally had to do that as well when I was working within an organization that was a full Microsoft shop, but at home we were choosing something different. So that is a caveat I want to give, which is a subtle difference of being a W2 employee versus being an entrepreneur someone that is running their own business.

So I hope that you have found this helpful. I would encourage you, if you're listening to this and you're over on Instagram, come follow me at Megan Sumrell, because I am often sharing different tools, like visuals of how I'm using these tools in my business, to kind of help get things going for you if you are really trying to streamline and narrow down your tool set. Have a fantastic day and I'll see you back here next week. Getting on top of all things time management, organization and productivity doesn't have to stop just because this episode is over. If you want one tap access to all of my training and current top podcasts, go to the App Store or Google Play and download the PinkBee app. It's one word the PinkBee. It is jam-packed with simple yet powerful tips and strategies to get you out of overwhelm and into harmony. And if you have a question you want me to cover on a future episode, go to iTunes and ask your question in the podcast review section. And while you're there, don't forget to leave a five-star review.


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