I use Trello a lot for managing tasks for work and personal projects and just little things I need to keep track of at home. These are some of the tips I’ve run across that make Trello easier to use.
If you haven’t used Trello before here’s a quick overview.
Imagine organizing a bunch of sticky notes in columns on a whiteboard. The sticky notes are tasks to do, and the columns can represent anything you want, statuses, phases of a project or something else. That’s what Trello is like.
The board is like the whiteboard. You can have any number of columns or “Lists” on that board. The default lists you get are To Do, Doing and Done. Each of the columns represent a status for the “cards” that are in the list. Cards are like sticky notes that you can move from list to list depending on what status they have.
When you start a task on a card, you move it from the To Do list to the Doing list. When you are done a task you move the card from the Doing list to the Done task.
You can have as many lists on a board as you want. And you can have as many boards in your Trello account as you want.
Ok, now you’re a pro user here’s some tips.
Tip: Use it however you want
The first thing I need to mention about Trello is that you can use it however you want. It’s very flexible and you can move cards and lists and boards wherever you want to. If you want to have all your projects on one board and view them all at the same time, you can. If you want to have all your projects on separate boards to separate them you can do that too. If you want to have a workflow that moves boards and lists from board to board, you can do that too. If you want to link from one board to another you can do that. However you want.
Because you can do anything you want, all these tips are things to try, not best practices that you have to use. Try new things and keep what works for you and your projects.
Tip: Create links to other boards
In the descriptions and comments of each card, you can insert hyperlinks to other websites and other Trello boards. If you have a card that references a project on another Trello Board then you can link to it.
I have a main board for all my website work that lists one card for each project I have. I move these projects around on the lists and use it as a birds-eye view of which projects have started and which have not. For all the details involved in each of those projects, I have an entire board. From my main birds-eye view board, I have links to each of the project boards. I can see the high-level status on the high-level board and when I need to see or work on details in one of the projects, the link will take me to the project board where all the details are.
Tip: Create an archived list board
Moving cards from the Doing list to the Done list is a great way to show that it’s been completed but all the cards pile up in the Done list on big projects. I’d rather not see a whole lot of Done cards but at the same time, I like keeping them around so I can look later, or find a card that’s been completed. At the end of every week, I add a date to my Done list and send it to a Done Board. The Done board is a whole pile of weekly lists of the completed tasks from each of the projects. It’s nice to see how much I’ve done. It also makes it easy to see when things were completed.
Tip: Double click to create a list
I just found this feature the other day. You can double click anywhere on the blue board background to create a new list. It will create the list just behind the list you are under when you click. If you are under your 3rd list when you double click, it will create a new list in the 4th spot by default. You can change the order of the lists if you want.
Tip: Use checklists for small items, create cards for large ones.
If a task on a Card has a couple steps that I need to remember, then I make a checklist for it. You can make as many checklists on each card if you want but the more you make the more confusing each are is. I use 2 or 3 max. Once those checklists get large and confusing, it’s time to make them into additional cards so you can track the information
Your Favourite Tips
Those are some of my favourite tips. The beauty of Trello is that there are so many different ways to use it. What are your favourite tips?