3.5 out of 5 stars
- Small, portable size
- Limited space for tasks
- Week at a glance view
- Perforated edges for easy marking of current week
- Monthly view too compact
- Limited space for planning outside of scheduled time slots
I discovered Harold Taylor at the NAPO conference last year, and came home with some questionnaires he developed to identify problem areas with organization and time management. This year, I came home with one of his books and a sample of his planner. After using the PlannerPad, I moved to this Taylor Planner. What better time of year to consider what you might need for next year?
One of the things that I absolutely love about this planner layout is the extremely limited space allotted for daily tasks. I have often struggled with trying to do too much in a given day and I see this frequently with the people I work with as well. We’re never satisfied with our accomplishments, “we should have done more.” With this planner, you choose the top 3 things you want to get done on a given day, which is written above the daily scheduling column. It can help focus you on the most important tasks, then everything else you get done is a bonus. You only had three things, you get those done, you’ve succeeded with your plans.
There is an additional space in each column for any follow-up actions you need to attend to for a given day. I used this more sporadically, as it applied to my life and tasks. It’s good to have an additional space, yet limited space for something that arises. He suggests using that to record when assignments are due.
On the left side of the two-page weekly layout is a column for that week’s priority, your weekly action items, and notes. It’s important to focus on your goals, and it’s great that he provides a small box to remind you on a weekly basis as well as cuing you to work toward your long-term goals.
There are different ways to approach your calendar. As I talked about in the review of Getting Things Done, David Allen proposes that you schedule tasks into your calendar with caution. Harold Taylor is of a different perspective, where you use your calendar to schedule all activities, providing the commitment as well as time to get them done. Since this is just talked about in the beginning of the planner, I cannot tell to what extent he promotes this. I know that for myself, if I schedule things that are not time sensitive or important, it’s too easy to still not work on those tasks and then feel the sense of failure at not accomplishing them! Other than in the column to the far left for weekly action items, there is not much space for planning.
When I was strictly a paper planner person, I relied on the monthly calendar view. This planner’s version of that is considerably too small for me. The monthly view consists of 3 months on a page. Yet, as I move to scheduling on my iPad, the monthly view no longer holds much value to me. You need to evaluate what your priorities are in this regard. This is the same layout for the future years, at the back of the planner. I find the year at a glance intriguing while at the same time a little odd – each column is a month and the holidays are labeled.
From my sensitivity to carrying around planners, I appreciate the compact size of this planner. It is slightly larger than a standard trade paperback book and fairly thin; it will not contribute much weight to a purse or bag. The version I have is bound, with some space for the binding to not interfere with entering the information you need to. Since it was a free copy, it’s just the planner itself, though offers a cover, with pockets for business cards and to carry post-it notes around with your planner. Also, with the perforated lower corner, it’s easy to mark (tear it off) and find the current week. Included with the planner are contact pages, several assignment record pages, notes, and a section for back burner ideas.