A Daily Donut for Productivity

When you hear “calendar app”, you likely imagine it looking something like this:

Quick! How many hours do you have for work today?

This grid format helps you to see the events of your day, or what parts of your day are “booked out”. But it doesn’t convey the more important information of how much time you have left in the day to do your work.

That depends on when you start work and when you finish work on a regular day. If you have fixed working hours, you know that you can only get “x” tasks done in a day. But if you work in an industry with casual working hours, this is a fuzzy detail that you likely don’t think about often.

When you don’t deliberately state your start and finish times, one of two things happen. You either spend too little time on tasks and too much time on meetings. Or you spend too much time at the end of the day to finish your tasks.

Any calendar app that aims to make you more productive should solve this problem. So at TimeFerret, we came up with a design that would break down the day’s schedule in one simple visual.

The Daily Donut in TimeFerret

In TimeFerret, a grey donut represents the 24 hours of the day. The day’s events are coloured into this donut. Your regular working hours that are free of events are shown as green arcs inside the donut. You can also see the exact duration of the fragments of time between meetings.

This is how you can use this view to best effect. If you have a few easy tasks to finish, you can plan to do it in the short fragments of time between meetings. If you have challenging work that requires thought, you can do that in the longer stretches of time that are free of interruptions.

Here’s the added bonus. Since you’ve set expectations for the day from the get-go, you’re more likely to stick to your working hours.

Work/life balance, check.

But if you prefer the linear way of looking at your schedule, TimeFerret gives you the choice of doing that too. You simply toggle back and forth between the two views. (But really, the Donut is way better.)

In the next article, I’ll talk about how the TimeFerret Keyboard makes it easy-peasy to schedule meetings.

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