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Task List Template

Journalist and comedy writer H. Allen Smith once mused that the passion for making task lists is what separates humans from lesser primates. While we aren’t disputing the many other qualities of our specie, the ability to run mental scenarios and plan our tasks in advance has probably given us a major evolutionary edge throughout the millennia.
As the complexity of our society and interactions increased, so did the need for a system that ensures we can handle our responsibilities effectively and within the allocated timeframe. One such solution is the task list timeline, which is also the answer to the question “what do you get if you cross a to-do list with a calendar?”.
 

Why do we love making daily task lists so much?

If you were to ask Dr. David Cohen, the popularity of lists is deeply rooted in our psychology. Therefore, they are the perfect tools to:

  • Reduce anxiety caused by the uncertainty of daily life;
  • Confer us a sense of structure;
  • Prove we achieved something.
     

And that’s not all, as other studies show that people handle tasks more effectively if they are allowed to note down a list with the activities beforehand. There are very few who still believe that tracking time at work using a task list template stifles creativity. In actuality, the lack of structure is the real enemy of productivity, because unfinished tasks will pile up with the speed of a snowball rolling downhill, and mounting anxiety is the real showstopper.
 

How do you start a task list?

When you decide to simplify your life by creating a task tracking list it’s important to start out on the right foot, as this ensures your list will not just be a never-ending catalog of activities you feel guilty over. Here are some pointers that can help:

  • Try out a time tracking free app or two before you find one that matches your needs. Even the best app for tracking time can be too complex or too basic for your purposes, and it’s important that you feel comfortable with it, otherwise you will probably stop using it altogether. On a side note, digital daily task list solutions are superior to their paper counterparts thanks to features like reminders, easy customization, collaboration and cloud storage.
  • When you need to make more than one list – and you will – look for apps that allow you to create a reusable task list template. Task management templates allow you to spend less time fiddling with the design and items, and more time on crossing off said item.
  • Use project tracking tools that allow you to set due dates for the tasks rather than simple checklist whenever you can, even if not all the items really require a hard and fast completion date. This allows you get a sense of how to prioritize the activities and make adjustments in case of schedule conflicts.
  • Don’t use the project tracking software for big picture objectives or desirable outcomes that are difficult to estimate and quantify. Instead, focus on tangible tasks that can be completed and crossed off.
  • Check your task tracker app frequently. Even a perfectly compiled schedule won’t help you improve productivity if you don’t stick with the plan and start working on random things.
     

Project management tracking with task lists

Using task lists to monitor project progress is not entirely different from employing these tools to optimize your own schedule. If your task management template is in the task timeline format, you just need to ensure is that you’re setting attainable due dates for the activities at hand. The main difference in the case of the group project task list is that each activity needs to be assigned to a specific member or team.
You can also create an employee task list template to simplify the job of allocating everyone tasks by hand every single time. At the same time, make sure that the relevant information for each task is available to the team; cryptic annotations might work for personal task lists, but you will end up being constantly prompted for clarifications if the instructions are confusing.
 

Advantages of teams tracking on a task timeline template

When it comes to picking the optimal project management time tracking solutions, we think nothing beats timelines and Gantt charts. Adding swimlanes to these data visualization solutions makes it so much easier to figure out immediately which team is handling which side of the work, if they are on track or if rescheduling is required, the impact of changes on other stages of the project, etc. Communication between the PM, collaborators, stakeholders and executives is also facilitated by these project time tracking tools, thanks to their intuitive nature, and using a professionally designed timeline template can really speed things up.
The task list template can be downloaded free of charge and you can update the default items with your project’s specifics in PowerPoint, but it’s much easier and quicker to do so with the Office Timeline add-in. Avoid falling behind on your work projects, stay up to date with the progress of the teams you’re managing or simply bring more structure in your life with the help of our task timeline!

Updating your template is simple and fast.

Use the Office Timeline PowerPoint add-in to quickly update any of these timeline templates or create your own project visuals. Easily change the texts, dates, colors, shapes and styles of your timeline, right from inside PowerPoint.

Free PowerPoint Timeline and Swimlane Maker