Sunday, 29 January 2012

Segregation of work and personal life, work and personal systems

The to do list is a perfect example of the challenge of segregating work and personal life, and work and personal systems. Sometimes it's necessary to have personal items on your work to do list, for example to remind you to pop to the bank in your lunch break (why don't banks do convenient opening hours!). Likewise, it is fairly common to have work items on your personal to do list (for example if you've brought work home to do on the weekend).

Ideally, you want one list that covers both. And you want it tightly integrated with your email (both personal and work), calendar (both personal and work), social media, etc. But that means your work information begins leaking into the personal area, which presents data protection and commercial confidentiality issues.

A concrete example: say you are a manager who has an employee who is underperforming and subject to performance review. That performance review is going to appear as a to do item, and if that to do list appears in your personal sphere, that puts confidentiality at risk.

How can we bring everything together, but keep it apart?

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