Using Trello for Startup Project Management

I love creating to-do lists. I handwrite one for myself every day with all of the important things I need to get done in my beautiful polka dot notebook.

My fave polka dot notebook that holds my to-dos
My fave polka dot notebook that holds my to-dos

This works great for any short-term tasks that I need to take care of, but doesn’t really give me what I need when it comes to long-term startup planning.

I’ve tried a ton of project management apps and sites and abandon most of them after a couple weeks.

At my former startup we only had three formal employees: my cofounder, our developer and myself (we also worked with some freelancers).  My former cofounder and I had a ton of shared Google Docs and emails that kept us on track, but our tech guy asked us to use Basecamp as a central hub.

I like Basecamp a lot. I use it at the agency everyday and it’s the best collaborative project management software I’ve ever used. However, it’s pretty much overkill for this party of one that I’ve got going on right now.

Instead I’ve just started using Trello.

With Trello I have four boards set up: To Do, Doing, Done and Maybe Later.

Example trello boards
My Trello boards :)

The Maybe Later board carries ideas I once thought I would want to put into production right away, but later decided it wouldn’t be necessary for launching a minimal viable product (MVP).

Currently I am using these same four boards for all types of things (production, technology, marketing, shipping, etc.) but eventually I will separate them out into individual categories.

My reason for not doing that right now is because my main goal is to launch as fast as possible. This means I want to focus on just the things I NEED to do. In theory this means my lists should never be so long that I have to have them separated out into departmental categories.

After the launch of my MVP I will need to start focusing on expansion of each of the departments of my startup and at that time I will create my categories.

How do you stay on top of your to-do list? Which apps would you recommend I try?

(I’ve already tried Basecamp, Liquid Planner, Podio and Yammer – each one has its pros and cons.)