Implementing GTD with Omnifocus in a real estate law/title & escrow business
I own and operate a real estate law practice which consists mostly of conducting residential and commercial property transaction with and without lenders. I'm not sure the best way to implement GTD - should each file be its own project? I may have 100 files open at once, which would make my Projects a little overwhelming. Or would a better approach be to have "Closings" as a project with the tasks grouped according to file?
Any advice is much appreciated, especially if you are implementing GTD in a law practice or title & escrow company. Thoughts?
can't help directly, but...
Even though I am not in the same field or using the same software, I can address your question more generally.
Based on your situation, I would suggest having a long Projects list. I'll explain my thinking.
Remember that the function of the Projects list is to present a "dashboard" summary of every outcome you are at all committed to creating. In a sense, it is a list of "changes-in-my-world-from-the-present-reality-to-the-future-I-want". If that list does not present all of the changes you are presently working at creating, then the Projects List will not deserve your full trust and reliance. In other words, you could look at the list and not be reminded about a particular client or transaction or situation that needs resolved.
You could tailor the Projects list, however, to your particular needs. For example, if you have several concurrent projects that are "parked" for a while, but still ongoing, those could have a designated section of your Projects list. This is parallel to the divisions the Next Actions list (into Contexts) when it gets so long that reviewing it could blow a fuse.
I would specifically recommend against using some larger area as your Project, for example "Chase Bank transactions resolved". If you see that on your Projects list, you would then be forced to pull out your Project support material or Project Plan in order to know what areas actually need your attention. In this way, the Projects List loses its function.
Some people use a Mind Map or Project Plan, which must be consulted with each decision. I put all Projects and Subprojects on my Projects list. Some clients have ten Subprojects listed, others have one.
In my life and work, I may add a dozen or more Projects to my list per day. That could seem cumbersome, but I feel comfortable knowing 100% that it is ALL out of my head. Everything I'm trying to accomplish is there... everything from "Finish load of laundry" to "Increase output to $5M this quarter."
Hope this helps.
Treat it as an Area of Focus
II have debated this issue for years. I am a solo with a general practice thats leans heavy
Here is how I handle it. I have a list that I treat as an Area of Focus Called "Master Case List"
This list has every active file/client in my office listed, and grouped by type of Case ie
John smith AA(Auto Accident) SOL Next action
Joe Blow AA
Tom smith Deed
sally misth PI/SF(Personal Injury Slip Fall)
Each of this cases have numerous projects on my projects list that are tracted in Outlook via the task bar
The "Master Case List" is area of focus but it is reviewed at every weekly review