Disclaimer: I’m not affiliated with Nozbe and any of the resources mentioned in this post (no affiliate links).
Tired of switching back and forth between different task managers, and looking for the best solution?
There’re so many tools out there that arriving at the right decision seems almost impossible. What you want is a trusted productivity tool that helps you get things done more effectively, right?
Back in the good old days when I became obsessed with productivity, I tried out every single task management tool I could get my hands on. It was Christmas morning every single day.
But, at the end of the day, many of the tools left me disappointed for some reason. Either, they were just too simple or too complicated. I wanted a lot more than a mere shopping list without compromising my ability to get things done quickly.
And then I found Nozbe and Asana. I quickly fell in love with these tools. The only problem was I couldn’t make the decision. I ended up using Asana for a couple of months and then switched to Nozbe. (Feel free to check my detailed comparison of these tools here.)
And that was the beginning of a new era …
Why I still can’t quit Nozbe
At that time, Nozbe was recruiting members into the launch team of the book 10 Steps to Ultimate Productivity. This was the beginning of my personal Nozbe journey.
Nozbe is so much more than a productivity app. Behind Nozbe, there’s a small and dedicated team of remotely working individuals and yours truly, Michael Sliwinski, CEO and founder of Nozbe.
I see this personal experience as an anchor that pushes my Nozbe experience to the next level.
Honestly, I tried to exit a few times over the years (please don’t tell the Nozbe team) but couldn’t find a comparable service. Read on to figure out why.
We live in the iOS era, and many companies still don’t want to consider alternatives. Notably, Nozbe offers standalone apps for Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android, plus has a web app with equally capable functionalities.
I’ve used Nozbe on all of those platforms over 4 years and can’t remember a time with a service breakdown. Once I had some issues with the Android app, hit an email to Nozbe support, and got prompt feedback telling me to sign out of my account that solved my issue immediately.
Apart from that, there was a problem with syncing maybe two times over the four years. Again, prompt feedback and issue solved within hours. (In the meantime, I was still able to work offline.)
That leads us to the next point: reliability.
Reliability & longevity
When it comes to finding the right task management tool, you may want to choose a service that has been there for a while. One that has carved out a niche for itself.
Nozbe has a long history dating back to 2007 when a young Polish entrepreneur inspired by the Getting Things Done methodology developed a little system for himself. It was Michael Sliwinski.
Nozbe was born with the mission to help people get things done (instead of managing things).
Since then, Nozbe has withstood corporate interest and recently evolved into a two-product company. Nozbe (Personal) has long been in the game, while the company just launched Nozbe Teams to push team productivity to the next level. If you’re interested, here’s my review on Nozbe Teams. (Importantly, Nozbe Personal also excels at teamwork.)
Michael Sliwinski assured users multiple times that he doesn’t want to sell his company, nor he wants to team up with giants. So, we have every proof to see Nozbe evolving in the coming decade without being acquired by a multinational tech company, as the case was with the late Wunderlist.
Ease of use
There’re so many fancy tools out there. When it comes to getting things done, however, they fall short of satisfying the customer. Nozbe has simple anatomy, which makes it easy for you to manage your projects.
With its simple yet customizable system, you can immediately find your tasks. Nozbe’s mobile app provides a far better user experience than that of Asana or OmniFocus. You’re one click away from practically any action by clicking the task window. And this is a huge benefit over OmniFocus’ mobile app, for example, which has multiple tabs for a single task.
Nozbe provides a bunch of keyboard shortcuts on all devices. This is important because it allows you to use your tool with your keyboard.
What Nozbe brings to the table is in-depth functionality combined with elegant simplicity. While it lacks some advanced features like subtasks, Kanban boards, or a Gantt timeline view, it offers many unique functions that other tools fail to provide.
Here’re my all-time favorite features in Nozbe:
- Priority view: this is where I live most of the day. All tasks marked with a star and those that scheduled for today appear here. Although that’s not a fancy feature, nothing beats this view inherited from the late Wunderlist.
- Hashtag functions: many of my tasks come via email. Nozbe provides a unique email address that you can use to create a task from an email. I like to use hashtags to specify the project, tag, priority, and due date right from my email client.
- Quick add task window: whenever you’re working outside Nozbe, you can press a keyboard shortcut and add a task quickly to Nozbe. By using hashtags, you can assign a project, a tag, a due date, and even some comments as well. If you want that task to appear in your priority view, use “#!”. The cool thing is that you can make use of this syntax when working on individual tasks in Nozbe.
- Time needed function: when I specify the time needed to get my task accomplished, Nozbe pulls my data into my Google calendar and auto-fills the time slot.
Customer support & values
As I said earlier, Nozbe delivers awesome customer service. If you have a problem, you can expect prompt and friendly feedback from the Nozbe team.
Nozbe is much more than a simple productivity tool that you use and forget about at the end of the day. Nozbe is a big family with like-minded folks who “are mobile and live on the cutting edge.”
I strongly believe that the 5-star customer support along with Nozbe’s values is what sets this task manager apart from the competitors.
Finally, I want to shed light on what I currently miss in Nozbe …
What I (still) miss in Nozbe
Nozbe, as of 2020, is my personal favorite task management tool. But some long-awaited features could make it even stronger:
- Saving task details: while I like the task view, I hate pressing save (or Command + Enter) for a new entry. Most task management tools don’t require saving your entries anymore—it happens automatically.
- Infrequent updates: although Nozbe is a small company, very few updates, if any, have been released recently. While Nozbe Teams has been in the focus for over a year, it feels like Nozbe Personal has been neglected. (One of the latest updates was the dark mode, which was neither important nor appealing to me.)
- Icon library: the built-in icon library for tags seems a bit dated. Nozbe delivers outstanding visuals on its website, and Nozbe Teams also has some fancy icons. It wouldn’t take much effort from the developers to update the icon library.
- Look & feel: while nothing outperforms Nozbe when it comes to the smooth user experience, the look feels a bit dated.
- Sections: with sections, you can break up your projects into chunks. Many tools have long been supported this handy feature, and finally, Nozbe Teams introduced sections. I look forward to seeing this feature in Nozbe Personal too.
- Project details: you can’t assign many details to a project except for a basic description. (Honestly, I’d hardly use this description because it’s so hidden.) A progress report section and some optional fields would be useful here. (OmniFocus is way ahead in this sense.)
- Kanban view: another super cool feature that makes project management visually appealing. While simplicity is one of the strengths of Nozbe, I’d consider adding some flavor to the system.
I hope some of the “shortcomings” above will soon be addressed. Until then, I’ll remain an advocate of Nozbe.
What are your favorite features in Nozbe and what do you miss currently? Let me know in the comments.