GTD and Status Reports

Most engineers (and probably others) need to file weekly status reports. The format of my reports is:

  • Things done this week;
  • Things to do next week;
  • Outstanding issues that may need management attention.

This used to be a hassle for me since I often couldn't remember everything I'd done in the week. But I had a revelation while continuing to read Getting Things Done. May I suggest the following method:

  • Create a folder or tray called "For Status Report."
  • As items from Next Actions are completed, move them to For Status Report.
  • If you have issues that are non-actionable by yourself, but management should know about them, file those in For Status Report.
  • Every time your report is due, your "things done this week" section is in the folder. (Also review your email for the week.)
  • As you pull items out of For Status Reports to type them up, trash or file them as appropriate.
  • Review your Next Actions for the "things to do next week" section.
  • Any issues for management attention are already in the folder, too.

Needless to say, this becomes a subset of the GTD weekly review. I'd say "you kill two birds with one stone," but I'm too much of a bird lover to use that phrase. (Can anyone suggest an alternative phrase?)


An alternative to the "kill two birds with one stone." might be "two for the price of one."

Frank, that's perfect! Thanks.

A nice alternative a friend came up with is: "feed two birds with one seed".

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