Say Yes To Less Stress: Using Trello To Plan A Wedding

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For most people, organizing every detail of a wedding is often the most involved, logistically complicated event they will ever need to put together. Plus, it requires complete coordination with their future spouse. No pressure! Here’s an in depth look at how a few couples used Trello to manage the months of logistics that led up to their big days:

It started with a Trello board. Well, sort of. For Eric Neuman, founder of DecisionDesk, it actually started with him carrying an engagement ring through the jungles of Belize for two weeks, waiting for just the right moment to propose to Emily. Luckily the ring made it through the journey, and more importantly, Emily said yes! Next came the Trello board, presumably after they left the jungle.

As Eric explains, when he is using Trello to plan anything, he is the type of person that likes to first put something that he has already accomplished in a “Done” list. It is part of the “get things done” philosophy that helps him stay organized in all aspects of life. Planning a wedding is certainly no different, which is why Eric started this board with the already-done card “Get Engaged”:

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There you have it, one task already accomplished. Congrats!

Setting Up Your Lists For Optimal Marital Bliss

For Khoa Lam, Program Manager at Qualcomm, the yearlong planning process was so daunting that he decided to break up his Trello board lists based on how far out in the planning process he was.

That way, when a thought randomly materialized 6 months out about something that needed to get done shortly before the wedding, he threw it in his Trello board so that he wouldn’t forget about it when the time came. See: “Begin breaking in wedding shoes” in the “2 Weeks Out” list. So crucial.

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Khoa and his fiance divided their lists into “12+ months,” “10-12 Months,” “8-10 Months,” and so on. Each list spanned tasks in a 2 month time frame until the final 3 months, where they broke down a list for each month, as well as “2 Weeks Out,” “1 Week Out,” “Day Before,” and “Day Of.” In addition to these time-contingent lists, they also had “In Process,” and “Done” lists. Click here to see the full sample board, and feel free to copy this board for your own use.

The basic approach is to tackle the tasks within the corresponding time frame, so when you’re 6-8 months out, focus only on those list items. This is an effective way to prevent feeling overwhelmed by all of the countless preparation that needs to get done. Move cards from the “X Months Out” list to “In Process,” and then to “Done.” When you have finished that list, move on to the next time frame.

In addition, if there is an item that you fall behind on from a list from previous months, it will linger there, staring you down every time you open your Trello board. Beware, the abandoned list items.

A Successful Marriage Trello Board Is All About Communication

Khoa and his fiance also assigned each other to different cards, essentially assigning one another different tasks. For example, any coordination with the groomsmen became his domain, whereas she was interested in overseeing the flower arrangements and the invitations. Looking back at his board, Khoa admits, the assign feature allowed him to see just how much more work his fiance took on. Hopefully he remembered that when it was time to pick a nice restaurant on the honeymoon.

For some couples, aside from their spouse there is another VIP member of their Trello board: the wedding planner. Whether the planner is hired the day after the proposal or just to coordinate the day of, adding the wedding planner to your Trello board gives them complete visibility of vendor names, phone numbers, invoices, timetables, and tracking numbers. The comments on the backs of cards allow for a dialogue to ensue where everyone can see the details, and you can always reference what you discussed at a later date.

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Attachments and Deadlines

In addition to notes and discussion, it is supremely important to keep invoices, receipts, and due dates all in one place. Card backs can store all of this information, and even give you a notification when something is 24 hours from its due date. Attach directly from Google Docs, Dropbox, Box, and OneDrive, or just upload a file from your computer. You can also take a picture directly from a card, which is a great way to store paper receipts or color swatches.

Take A Vow To Carry Your Plans With You, Always

For Bryan Monzon, VP of Engineering at Fifty and Fifty, putting tasks in his Trello board ahead of time allowed him and his fiance, Sandy, more efficiency when they were on the go. “When we were out with a vendor and they were giving us information,” he explains, “I was just taking notes inside of Trello, because it’s the one place where we had everything.” Never lose another price quote, florist’s phone number, or your mind, again.

The app also helps couples be more efficient with their time. As Bryan explained, “My wedding band, for example- I didn’t need to do that right away. But we were running errands and Sandy pulled up the Trello board on her phone, and she happened to notice the wedding band card. We were right by the jewelers so we figured we’d just get it done right then and there. Having the information quickly there and visible allowed us to just get things done a lot easier and faster.”

For Khoa, it was about getting by with a little help from his friends… and his Trello mobile app. He explains, “We had a lot of friends that gave us a lot of advice and links to different vendors to check out, so I would just pull up the corresponding card on my phone and take notes. It was a great way to get down something I might need to remember later.”

Your Other Other Half

Unlike literally anything else involved in planning a wedding, Trello is infinitely flexible, and it’s free. There are a lot of tools and resources marketed towards people planning a wedding, but they are often narrow in their ability to structure them just the way you like, AND they cost money.

We have a template wedding board based on Khoa’s workflow that you can copy here, but also remember to tweak it however you like. Not planning to have flowers in your decor? Simply delete those cards. Is your reception menu due before the 3 month mark? Move it to a list that fits your timeline. Or, just start from scratch, and use the sample board to get ideas for things you hadn’t yet thought of. The point is, this is your wedding, and Trello is the most flexible way to plan it effectively.

Don’t stop here, either! There are other creative ways to use Trello to plan a wedding. Check out our sample boards:

Trello for the Seating Arrangement:

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Trello for seating arrangement – Copy me!

Bridal Party Trello Board:

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Trello for your bridal party – Copy me!

Trello for Wedding Day Timeline:

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Trello for Wedding Day timeline – Copy me! (And be sure to add your wedding planner, bridal party, parents, and everyone else that needs to stay up to speed on the big day.)

Trello for Sending Thank You Cards:

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Trello for sending thank you cards – Copy me!

Special thank you to Eric Neuman, Bryan Monzon, and Khoa Lam for sharing their Trello for wedding planning experiences and tips. Oh, and congratulations!

Want to plan your wedding with Trello? Sign up for free at www.Trello.com.

 

Kickstarting Creativity: How Trello Powers Communication At Kickstarter

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Kickstarter is the platform that powers creativity. From artists, to musicians, to Delorean hovercrafts, Kickstarter is the tool that innovators use to fund their ideas, get noticed, and most importantly, create something awesome. With over a billion dollars already pledged to projects on their site, Kickstarter is poised to help their creators fund a new world of inventions and endeavors. It is an impactful company with a lighthearted approach, and its platform allows creativity to develop uninhibited. In short, Kickstarter empowers others to change the world.

At the very heart of the Kickstarter mission is a fundamental concept: collaboration. The funding for projects on Kickstarter are crowdsourced by pledges from nearly 8 million backers interested in seeing the creation come to life. In the absence of collaboration, the very idea of sitting in bed, reading an emoji translation of Moby Dick by the light of an optical illusion LED lamp would not be possible. So thank you, Kickstarter, for helping those gems come to life.

It should come as no surprise that within the Kickstarter organization, teams work closely together to enhance their users’ experiences. Funding for dream projects is a tall order, and many teams within Kickstarter are fully immersed in Trello to aid them in their work.

The Community Support team at Kickstarter is there to answer questions at any stage in the fundraising process. Support tickets can be anything from general inquiries, such as whether it is possible to back a build-your-own paper velociraptor kit (yes), to more in depth troubleshooting concerns, like recommendations for the optimal method of shipping a bluetooth gramophone. It is not unusual for a Community Support specialist to require the input of another team. For example, there is a specific list on the CS team’s Trello board that indicates there is a technical issue that requires further inspection. If a card is created or moved to that list, a point person in Community Support knows to take that card to the Development team’s Trello board, in order for them to weigh in on the issue. The ability to add members to cards and solicit advice across teams is invaluable to providing optimal responses to user questions.

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Content writing and copy editing at Kickstarter are kept organized within Trello boards (which is not as cool as writing it down with the 3Doodler, but perhaps slightly more efficient). Trello helps foster a culture of transparency at Kickstarter; anyone can jump into a project board and give their input on how or what is being said. Members of other teams are invited to submit material that requires copy editing to the content writers’ Trello boards, ensuring that content across all channels is effectively communicated. Having a dedicated space that is accessible to everyone sets a low bar of entry for anyone to participate in discussion, regardless of their level of involvement in the project.

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The Product Marketing team at Kickstarter uses Trello to get an overview of where everyone is on a particular project. The nature of marketing is putting forth a polished version of a product that required work from a multitude of teams. For example, when Kickstarter recently launched in all of Scandinavia and Ireland, it required cross team collaboration from development, to support, to content writing, and beyond. Product Marketers are able to use Trello to oversee progress and communicate better timelines. Gaining cross team perspective by being able to view and collaborate on various Trello boards is invaluable to presenting a more cohesive end result.

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Any Trello boards shown in images for this article are sample boards that do not actually reflect any internal information about Kickstarter, its organization, or its users.

Kickstarter, the funding platform that helps power the world’s creativity and collaboration, is integrated with Trello to help accomplish its goals. So whether the project is a launch into space or a desire to whip up some potato salad, the Kickstarter platform is using Trello to help keep logistics organized.

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All About Accountability: Strategies For Being Resolute In Your Resolutions

Or how this year will be different than every. other. year.

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Does this scenario sound familiar? The New Year rolls around and you make resolutions, vowing this year will be different from the last. You pledge to hit performance goals to increase your pay scale and hit the gym to decrease the weight scale. In the beginning all goes well…for the first few days, at least. But then something happens (or rather, doesn’t happen) and you fall back into your normal, same-as-always routine.

This should sound familiar because it’s how most people go about making and breaking their New Year’s Resolutions (88% of people fail, according to one study).  But what if I told you that this year could be different? This year you could take advantage of research and tools to really impact change in your work and life. You use Trello at work, but did you know it can also help you achieve your personal goals?

If you’re ready to make this year count, then read on.

Write Them Down.

Research shows that the first step in achieving goals is physically writing them down somewhere you can reference. By taking something ephemeral and making it something concrete, we take the first step in keeping ourselves accountable. Instead of writing your goals down on a post it note and losing it in a couple of days, take the digital route and add a Trello board. Depending on how big or small your resolutions are, your board could be all of your resolutions or just one (say, a fitness board). You can even choose a card cover that inspires you- kind of like putting those unflattering pictures on the refrigerator.

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If you need to update your board on the go with progress, download the Trello app on your phone so your resolutions can burn a hole in your pocket.

Make A Concrete Plan

Goals are much more likely to be reached when there is a concrete plan involved. For example, “My business will double in revenue this year…” is not much without the execution portion, perhaps something like, “…by expanding our product line and distribution in the Midwest.” Make sure your goals have measurable, actionable check-in points right in your Trello board. You can even make a checklist to make sure you’re following all the steps in your plan.

Go further by setting due dates on cards as another way to keep yourself accountable.

 

Get Someone Involved

Humans stay on track by keeping others on track. Study after study shows that we are much more likely to bail on our own goals and disappoint ourselves, but we can change that equation by roping in a friend, coworker, or family member whom we don’t want to disappoint. This partnership benefits both people, as the support and encouragement of others helps everyone involved push forward and achieve goals.

If you and someone you know have similar resolutions, invite them to your Trello board. Have them add cards for their goals and plans, and then create a strategy. For example, if your goal is to learn how to code, sign up for a class together and track sessions with due dates. Or if you are trying to lose weight, keep a weekly record of your weight along with what you’ve done each week. Seeing the numbers and their fluctuation over time can be just the kick in the butt you need.

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Set A Series of Smaller Goals, Rather Than One Large One

Goal setting works best when you don’t set outrageous goals. Sure, it is possible to achieve an outrageous goal. It just may take a few smaller ones along the way to motivate you and make you believe that your goal is actually attainable. Have your resolution buddy double check your goals on your Trello board to make sure they’re legit. Setting a series of smaller goals on a Trello list and then moving those cards over to a “Done” column will give you the satisfaction that you’re working towards. Add some stickers for that extra bit of satisfaction.

This is it! This is your time to decide whether 2015 is the year you make those changes in life that you’ve been wanting, or whether another new year will go by same old, same old. Let Trello be that best friend, coach, or mentor that enables you to stay accountable and make positive change.

How are you using Trello to accomplish your goals this year? Tell us in the comments, or reach out to us on Twitter or Facebook.

Trello for Android – Now with 100% More Material!

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It’s finally here – our material Trello app for Android! We’ve been designing and coding our butts off for months on this release.1 It’s better, easier to use, and it looks sweet!

Wait a Minute – What the Heck is Material Design?

I’ve gotten a bit ahead of myself. Material design is a visual language introduced by Google this year. At its core, it’s a set of guidelines for creating well-designed apps that not only look good, but work well and delight the user.

This new release is Trello’s first foray into material design. The goal is to make the app look and feel better than ever.

More Than a Fresh Coat of Paint

There are no half measures for our team. In re-imagining the app through a material lens, we ran through the entire experience and made sure no stone was left unturned. Seriously, it was a ton of work.

Even more than that, we saw this project as an opportunity to rework some of the rougher parts of the app. We simplified navigation. We created a new board sidebar, which will be a lot easier to use than our old system. We made visual attachments easier to view. And so much more!

Show Me the Money!

Enough talk: what sort of changes did we make? A few pictures are worth thousands of words, which is great because I’m getting tired of typing anyways.

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As you can see, we’re not trying to give a shock to your system; it’s still the same Trello you have come to know and love. We just streamlined the interactions via material design and hard work.

Not Just for Candy Lovers

No one gets left behind! Even though only the most recent version of Android, Lollipop, showcases material design, we were able to bring material awesomeness to everyone.2

Just like that, you no longer have to upgrade your phone. Trello saves you from needing to buy a new gadget. What other app has saved you so much cash?

Things to Come

Check out the new version of the app – we’ll be rolling it out over the next couple days. Find out what you like, what you don’t, then help us improve it. Let us know what you think – the good and the bad. We’re always working to make the app better.


1The internal codename was “mako” – bonus points if you can figure out the reason for that.

2Well, truthfully, only most of it. Some things aren’t possible pre-Lollipop unless you’re a wizard and we don’t have any on staff at the moment.