I use Trello as a reference library, a repository of repository of all the information, assets and processes in my business.

Listen to other episodes of Productivish: Musings of a Distracted Entrepreneur.

Transcription of Another thing that Stays the Same: My Reference Library

So many things about my systems change. It’s just the way I work best. But there are a few things that stay the same. 

In other episodes I talked about my one calendar and about using Google Drive to store everything so that it’s easy to find and reference everywhere. 

This week, I am talking about using Trello, not as a project management tool (which is what it is advertised as), but as a repository of all the information, assets and processes in my business.

Let me be clear, I personally don’t store all my tasks and to dos in Trello but I know many people who do. It is simple to use, easy to share and it makes a great project management tool, but is not the one I am using at present. I use Trello to organize information. I use it as a reference library. 

For example, I’ve done this with my course and membership platform, Zenler, because it is a vast, wonderful, feature-laden behemoth that is constantly evolving with amazing new features being added and improved all the time. I love Zenler, but trying to keep track of all the improvements and additions is a nightmare and I useTrello to organize all that information. 

Zenler has a great course that explains everything but the changes are not always easy to find unless you learn about them all as they come out. As I am not constantly creating new programs, I find it hard to remember all those helpful features when it comes time to create something new or update something (as opposed to just adding to what I already have created).  

Getting all that information and all the new features and improvements laid out and organized in Trello has helped me to make the most from the platform. My Zenler board is such a helpful tool, that I now offer it as an affiliate bonus to those who buy Zenler through my affiliate link. 

All the assets of one of my memberships are in a Trello board and I am playing with the idea of embedding that board right inside my membership.

One of the amazing things about Trello is that you can embed a single card or a whole board into something else to make it all work seamlessly.  Though it did take a bit of finagling to figure it out.

I keep all my processes and checklists inside Trello. It makes it easy to find and follow the checklists and to update them as necessary. If I  have something that I need to do regularly, especially things that are done regularly but rather infrequently (because I am much more likely to forget how to do them), I will create a check list to follow the next time I do that process.

I can also attached more detailed information by directly adding Google Docs to my cards.

With rapidly changing technology it is possible, even likely, that the process will change over time, but it is easy to tweak the checklists to keep them current. 

Sometimes, a single platform gets its very own board (Zenler, for example, has its own board). 

Other times a platform or software has its own list in a broader board. At the time of this recording, I use GarageBand to record my podcast. GarageBand has its own list in my Tech Board.

Other times, different platforms and pieces of software are included in the processes that require them. And sometimes it is a combination of some or all of the above. 

For example, I have a template card for “Podcast episode.” It has all the steps I use to brainstorm, write, record and upload a single podcast episode. It doesn’t have all the nuances of using GarageBand, only the steps and settings pertinent to recording a podcast episode with the template I created using the information in the GarageBand list in the Tech Board. 

On that list, I have all the particulars of how to set things up and why. 

If I were to start using GarageBand to record music albums (which, thankfully for both of us, I will be), I would probably have to create a separate board for it because I would need to have a much deeper and broader knowledge of GarageBand of all its features. For my purposes however, a list-worth of knowledge is enough. 

It is great to have a repository of all my systems and checklists, my SOPs (standard operating procedures) and it is awesome that I can add supporting documents and links really quickly and easily  .

With this system it’s easy for me to outsource these things because I can give other people access to these cards as well.   Trello is great for organizing a small team or an individual who is working to get all their systems in place.