Questions to Ask When Selecting YOUR Planner

By Bob Sadowski, APR, Public Relations & Social Media Manager, ACCO Brands

When you make a purchase, it should be exactly what you want and need. Be it a large investment like a home or a vehicle, or something smaller like a kitchen appliance or pair of shoes, you always make sure the item meets your requirements and fulfills your ongoing needs. This is vital to remember when selecting a personal planner or organizer.

If you’ve ever shopped for a planner or organizer, you know that it’s oftentimes intimidating looking at the hundreds of different varieties. There is so much to examine and evaluate: sizes, formats and layouts, academic versus regular year, designs, colors…it’s no easy task, to say the least. And with the New Year just months away, this in-depth selection process is right around the corner for many of you.

To help you assess which planner is right for you, ask yourself these questions:

  • What is your personal style? Are you artsy and creative or do you prefer something more business-focused and simple?
  • Are you a hard-core planner or more spontaneous with minimal forward planning?
  • Do you need to write things down and maintain to-do lists in order to remember and stay on task?
  • Do you make a lot of appointments or do project-oriented work requiring ample space for notes and tracking deadlines?
  • Size matters—are you mobile in nature, and where do you like to keep your planner (e.g., purse, laptop bag, briefcase, etc.)?
  • Is your planner for your schedule only or do you track other individual or family schedules within?

Another criterion to consider is electronic versus paper. There is always much debate around which is the better method, but just like every other point around planning and organizing, the preference between electronic and paper—or a hybrid of the two—is highly individualized. If your day-to-day depends on Outlook, for example, make that work for you.

These questions, while not completely comprehensive when considering all of the options available, will get you focused on the type and design of planner that fits best with your lifestyle. Remember: It should not be looked at as form fits function, where YOU adapt YOUR planning style around the planner you happen to have. Rather, you need to be very meticulous when evaluating and selecting your next planner to make it work for you. After all, a good planner is an extension of you and your lifestyle—be sure to treat it that way!

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3 thoughts on “Questions to Ask When Selecting YOUR Planner

  1. Leslie Josel

    Thanks for the wonderful post. So important to find the one that works for you. I am noticing a trend back to paper planners. My clients say that the act of writing really helps them commit their to-dos to memory.

    Reply

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