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What is a planner

Definition: A planner is a tool that helps people organize and manage projects. This can include setting goals and objectives, creating schedules and budgets, assigning tasks and resources, and tracking progress. 

A project management planner typically has features such as a calendar, task list, and Gantt chart that can be used to visualize and manage the various elements of a project.  It is typically used from people like resource managers, project leads, product leads and even leadership.

Some planners also have collaboration tools that allow users to collaborate and share information in real-time. These tools can be useful for teams who are working on complex projects with many moving parts.

Planner types

There are six basic types of planners:

  1. Gantt charts — Gantt chart displays the task list on the left, and the project's time frame on the right side. It’s good for showcasing a complete life cycle of more complex projects on one screen. 
  1. Task lists — Task lists (or to-do lists) are simple and usually come in a streamlined list-style view, with the possibility to create sub-tasks, add tags and filters for ease of use. Task lists are better suited for smaller, more simple workloads.
Example of the task list in Mindmesh.
  1. Project calendars — Project calendars are specifically designed to outline the project timeline in detail. They help with time allocation within the company, sticking to the deadlines, and showing the amount of time required to complete individual tasks.
Example of project calendar in Mindmesh.
  1. Spreadsheets — Spreadsheets are versatile and adjustable, used for everything from invoicing, and creating task lists, to storing and manipulating data. In project planning, they’re better suited for simple tasks, as dedicated project-planning tools provide better functionality.
  1. Kanban boards — Kanban boards consist of titled columns filled with cards that carry the task/project details. They are agile and scalable project management tools, great for workflow and project visualization.
Example of Kanban board in Mindmesh
  1. Hybrid planners — Hybrid planners combine several project organization and visualization styles for maximum efficiency and convenience. Different tags, filtering options, permission levels, and folders enrich the hybrid planners and turn them into powerful collaboration tools.
Mindmesh home screen user interface.

Advantages of using planners

  1. Easy task prioritization — Sorting the tasks according to their importance, urgency, or other criteria of choice highlights the items that require attention first.
  2. Effective time management — Planners can display the complete project timeline, along with other details. This helps managers learn how much time they should assign for each task, and plan activities for each quarter.
  3. Improved financial performance — Project planners can also hold information about budget and profit, enabling users to allocate financial resources wisely.
  4. Aligning the team members — A team-wide project planner enables teamwork no matter where people are working from, revealing each task’s status.
  5. Keeping track of details — Project planners hold the essential information about the projects staff can reference and use whenever.

Common challenges of using planners

  • They can be overly complicated — The more options there are to choose from, the more difficult it is to make the platform intuitive. Businesses that opt for highly complex planners need special onboarding sessions and further assistance to use them, when a simpler solution may work better and have a gentler learning curve.
  • Not suited for specific use cases — When choosing planning software, business owners and managers need to have their specific workflows and job requirements in mind. Otherwise, you will not get the most out of the planner.
  • The planner isn’t regularly updated — Project planning tools require instant updates to fulfill their purpose. Look for project planners with good automation capabilities, and instruct everybody on board to update their tasks and projects instantly.
  • They waste your time — “Work around work” is a term that describes the unnecessary effort that takes away from meaningful, skilled labour. Switching between applications and programs, looking for task information, participating in numerous meetings, and learning how to use a project-planning platform that was supposed to make work easier all fall into this category. 

Mindmesh planner eliminates workflow interruptions

Mindmesh is your virtual desk project that ties all your tasks together to eliminate workflow interruptions.

The desk is a centralized planning platform that displays notifications from dozens of messenger, email, and other apps you use — Asana, Figma, Google docs, Confluence, Miro, Notion, and more. 

Reminders will help you revisit the non-urgent work later, so you can focus on the critical tasks at hand.

With Mindmesh, you can:

  • Pull all of your assignments into one time management tool;
  • Take notes;
  • Schedule meetings;
  • Add calendar events;
  • Assign tasks to teammates;
  • Leave links to important materials.

Intuitive, customizable, and rich in integrations — Mindmesh will help you organize the work around your preferences.

Is Mindmesh planner only for work-related tasks, or can it be used for personal tasks too?

You can use Mindmesh to plan all of your tasks, including personal and work-related. The goal is to centralize all of your to-do items in one place and schedule them efficiently. 

What planner types does Mindmesh support?

Mindmesh is a hybrid planner, consisting of Kanban boards, task lists, and calendars.

How many calendars can I integrate with Mindmesh?

You can integrate as many calendars as you need.

Can I integrate other project planning and management tools with Mindmesh?

Yes – You can integrate numerous project planning and management tools, some of them being Asana, Airtable, Todoist, Intercom, Monday, Notion, Trello, Drive, Zendesk, and Jira.

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Article FAQs

What is the difference between a planner and a to-do list?
A to-do list is simply a list of tasks that you need to complete at the moment. A planner shows a wider range of tasks based on which you create to-do lists.
What is the difference between a planner and a scheduler?
Planner is based on research and strategy, consisting of tactics to help us reach a certain goal. The scheduler showcases time slots for each task that needs to be performed to reach a certain goal.
What is the difference between a planner and a project management tool?
A planner is a basic tool used to create high-level plans, while project management is a comprehensive tool used to manage the full range of activities and tasks associated with project management.

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