What’s Holding You Back When You’re Using Trello

Trello is one popular way to manage tasks these days. Like many other task systems, Trello is based on the KANBAN way of doing things. KANBAN is a very popular method for managing tasks. That’s because KANBAN is a great way to display tasks' statuses.


This is KANBAN display, used by Trello and similar products
Lightbulb Outside the realm of small tasks, the KANBAN way of doing things crumbles.

1. KANBAN doesn’t help you PLAN

KANBAN is not a strategic tool, it’s a tactical tool. A list of tasks is a short term thing and it keeps you focused on what’s urgent. As a manager you want to be able to work strategically as well and focus on what's important. The KANBAN-Trello way focuses on action items alone, it doesn’t enable you to plan ahead.



Making a List Is Not Planning

Lightbulb Planning is effective when you know who's doing what and where it is at.

2. KANBAN can’t show you the BIG PICTURE

Good management is about each employee knowing what they need to do. Great management is about each employee knowing what the company needs to do! Showing everyone in your company the Big Picture of the company’s goals, focuses and state of things, gets everyone aligned and motivated. Aligned - because they see the same goals in front of them. Motivated - because they see where they fit in and how their contribution is significant to the company’s effort and success.

Giving someone a list of tasks, day in and day out, can feel Sisyphean. But showing them the Big Picture ties them emotionally to the company’s goals as they see how their personal effort translates to something bigger and substantial.

When do you need to manage the BIG PICTURE:
Up to 10employees 10-20employees 20-30employees Over 40employees
Offices occupying one floor Team small enough to know the Big Picture through daily interaction Team small enough to know the Big Picture through daily interaction Big Picture Management important Big Picture Management crucial
Offices occupying multiple floors in a building People know the Big-Picture through regular interaction Big Picture Management important Big Picture Management crucial Big Picture Management crucial
Offices On Multiple Locations Big-Picture Management is important Big Picture Management crucial Big Picture Management crucial Big Picture Management crucial
Lightbulb When employees are not allowed to see the Big Picture, over time they lose their sense of purpose at work and their motivation drops.

3. KANBAN can’t handle New Features

Features are far more complex than a list of tasks. Managing new features is a multidimensional process, involving cross-team communication with high coordination levels, an often non-linear progress and flexible estimations. This can not be achieved with a flat single layer display.

Tasks Management Features Management
Complexity Simple, Done/Not Done Complex, multiple functions that progress independently
Time To Completion Short Long
People involved A few Many, often in different teams
Completion Requirements Mostly known Mostly unknown
Time Estimation Accurate, broken down to to-do lists Rarely accurate, mostly assessment
Communication Overhead Hardly none High, across several functions and often time zones
Effective View KANBAN DISPLAY 1 Dimension Items move around and have one state only BIG PICTURE DISPLAY 3 Dimensions
Items stay in their place and display progress using text and color coding.
Lightbulb Getting people to complete high-level objectives such as features
requires their understanding > this is only acheived through a "Big-Picture" view.

daPulse is all about the Big Picture

We’ve created daPulse to bridge the gap between High Level and Low Level, by showing everyone the Big Picture. We believe that Good management is about each employee knowing what they need to do, but Great management is about each employee knowing what the company needs to do!

When you have a fast pace, fast deployment, quick to market company, you need everyone's eye on the ball. Showing the Big Picture is the best way to achieve that. Let everyone know what’s important to the company to get them aligned and let them see how their personal effort translates into something bigger.

Lightbulb The truly great management tool is the one everyone in the team uses!
CREATE YOUR FIRST BIG PICTURE