Your ultimate guide to Agile lingo

Circle rep


Getting Things Done, the art of stress-free productivity, is the title of a book published in 2001 by David Allen. It describes a personal approach to priority management, a five-phase approach that allows everyone to organize the most effective way to perform their daily tasks.

These five phases aims at "organizing the chaos" that surrounds us. This is the promise f Getting Things Done (GTD) website makes, which is now a registered trademark.

First, it is a matter of collecting ("capturing") everything that falls within the spectrum of our concerns: business, ideas, projects to be completed or undertaken, whether they are personal or professional...

The second step is clarification (‘clarifying’). For each task, consider whether it is a priority, whether it is feasible, and whether its importance merits action or not. If the answer is no, then this task should be discarded, abandoned, or archived. If, on the other hand, the answer is yes, then the subject has two choices. If the task execution takes less than two minutes to complete, then it should be completed. If it requires more time, it is necessary to move on to the next phase: organising.

Organising is the process of clarifying each task and its execution, and estimating its level of priority. At the end of this stage, an exhaustive list and a form of agenda of actions must emerge.

Refer frequently to this list is the fourth step (‘review’). The principle is that of regular monitoring of the task progress. The method recommends at least a weekly review to correct, review or update this set of priorities. It is also, of course, an opportunity to monitor our effectiveness.

Finally, the last phase is simply the action phase ("engage"). Act, thanks to the planning you prepared.

This method is extremely simple and flexible in its application. This is the promise it holds: its success and effectiveness lie much more in the understanding and assimilation of its principles than in these tools, although these phases may, at first glance, seem rather tedious.

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