February 8, 2010

EPM and keeping your contacts organized

How the heck do you keep track of everybody you've ever met? It seems impossible. And maybe it is. So start with anything and recognize it won't be perfect:

A paper address book
Your cell phone
Outlook
Your iPhone, synced with computer address book
Your email account

Whatever you choose, use it. Keep your contacts in it. What kind of information do you need? Only what you think you'll need to know again. My tendency when starting a new system like this is to create something that is too big and complicated, then after the second time I use it, it feels like too much work, and I abandon it. So, stick with basics:

Phone
Address
Email
Birthday
Name of Spouse/Partner/Kids

You won't get this type of information from everybody, but for anyone you want a relationship with, if you get these 5 things in your book, you are good to go.

If each person matters, you make sure your address book reflects it.