06 December 2012

Six ways Filofax and Franklin Covey are different - Guest Post - Patty

A big thank you to Patty from 'Homemakers Daily' for this guest post about the differences between Filofax and Franklin Covey.



Earlier this year I stumbled across the Philofaxy website and it changed my life!  I’ve always loved paper planners but most of the people in my life don’t share my passion.  They know I need a paper planner but they aren’t interested.

When I discovered Philofaxy, I found a community of people who LOVED paper planners the way I did.  And as I read through the articles and comments, I realized that I wasn’t alone!
I’ve been a long-time Franklin Covey user (compact, 2ppd) but have been experimenting with Filofax for several months.  As I’ve learned more about Filofax products, I’ve discovered six big differences between how Franklin Covey (FC) planners are used and how Filofax (FF) planners are used.

1.         The most popular format for FF planners seems to be some form of the week on two pages.  For FC planners, the most popular is two pages per day.  Franklin Covey does sell a lot of weekly pages these days but the day on two pages is by far the most popular.



2.       Filofax planners don’t come with monthly pages.  If you purchase the pages, they’re not tabbed and are printed back-to-back.  This makes sense when you consider that Filofax users usually have a week on two pages in their binder.  In that case, monthly pages aren’t as important.  But in a Franklin Covey planner, the monthly pages are extremely important and come with every set of pages whether the pages are weekly or daily.  The calendars are tabbed and have a blank section on the front of each month for a Monthly Index and a blank section on the back for monthly tasks.



3.       That brings me to the next point which is that Filofax users usually have an entire year of weekly pages in their binder (hence the reason the monthly page isn’t as important).  Franklin Covey users usually only have two or three months of pages at a time.  When a month is complete, that month’s pages are moved to a storage binder.

4.       Filofax users tend to store their used pages in boxes or throw them away.  Franklin Covey users store their used pages (and unused pages) in a storage binder.  When the year is complete, the storage binder contains a permanent record.


5.       Filofax pages are pretty plain so it gives Filofax users the freedom to personalize with color and design (which they love doing!).  Franklin Covey pages are already colorful so there’s no room for creativity.


6.       And this is the biggest difference, I think.  Since most Filofax users use weekly pages, there’s not a lot of room to write anything but appointments (although I’ve seen pages that held a LOT of info!).  So Filofax users rely heavily on the tabbed sections at the back.  That’s where all the good stuff is.

Franklin Covey users write nearly everything on the daily pages and use the tabbed section at the back for short-term projects or certain types of information.  For example, I have my financial information in the tabbed sections.  It wouldn’t make sense to keep that on my daily pages.  If I’m working on a project, I would put it in one of the sections.  And I have reference information in one of the sections.  But everything else goes on the daily page and then the important information is recorded on the Monthly Index sheet for easy future reference.

I found it interesting to see the differences between the two systems.  It also helped me figure out why I was struggling to switch from Franklin Covey to Filofax.  Even though the two systems look very similar, these are pretty major differences.

And thank goodness.  None of us are alike and nor do we do things the same way.  I love the fact that there are so many choices.  We get to pick the system that works best for us.

Now . . . if I could only decide.

47 comments:

  1. Filofax has a whole wack of daily pages too that you can print of from Philofaxy. They also got ones where they are in vertical columns with time slots.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I've tried both the DayTimer and a few different Filofax layouts. DayTimer is just like Franklin Covey; months, two pages per day, everything goes in the daily pages for the most part. I loved having the space but eventually found it was excessive and that the granularity of day-to-day planning was causing me to lose perspective and lose track of big projects. On the other hand, the filofax week on two pages simply does not give adequate space for the numerous to-do items I need to tend to on a daily basis. I prefer to have these assigned to days rather than in a separate section because I essentially "assign" them days and, occasionally, times when they will get done. If I just have a long rambling list I lose all control and have no idea what to do when or what is higher priority. Quite a disaster! My solution, which is working just fine at the moment, is to put appointments and schedule information on the week on two pages diary, and interleave a self drawn "to-do" page which has two blocks for each day, one for personal to tos and one for work to dos. There is space for about 8 action items per day, which is normally adequate. And space for several appointments to be written in along with work schedule notes and such. I'm not sure which system is superior, as you point out, we're all different.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. At first I thought the week on two pages in FF would not be enough space for me to write but it seems to work out fine. I guess everyone has different preferences and things to meet their needs in terms of planning/diary. I have to say tho that Franklin Covey does have a wide range of weekly pages. When I was using FC I was using weekly pages. I know you never used FC so you don't know.

      Delete
    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
    3. I use the WOTP Filofax, and like Josh, I insert pages for ToDo lists and the like. I find it works fine. The paper for Filofax is slightly thinner than Franklin Covey and Daytimer, which I prefer, to keep things thin in my binder, which has 11mm rings.

      Delete
    4. Josh, I like the idea of your interleaved 'To Do' list. Do you have any pics?

      Delete
    5. I also would love to see pics of this, Josh!

      Delete
    6. Great compromise, Josh. If I was using weekly pages, I would have to do something like that, too.

      I do miss using weekly pages because it is nice to see the whole week at one time. One day at a time is sometimes so limiting. Sounds like you found the best of both worlds.

      Delete
  3. Great post Patty. As someone who had been using FC for over 20 years and recently switched to Filofax (though I did use Day Timer, Day Runner and once in the 80's I even used a Filofax) I agree with all of your points and comparisons. At one time I probably had 20 FC binders and have tried all 4 sizes! The reason I switched from FC to Filofax is: 1) the paper was annoying me; as you said, it is very decorated. I used to enjoy that but over time I found it to be too busy for my taste. And the 'original' paper is so distasteful to me. I really dislike that shade of green (what is that???) on the white which they have not changed in 20 years. Well,, that's not completely true. It used to be more of a drab green on dull paper (almost dirty looking) and then they changed the 'original' inserts to that sort of teal green on bright white paper. It doesn't work for me! 2) My favorite size was the Classic but it got too cumbersome so I mostly used Compact size. Over time I found the width of the binders very annoying. It was too fat and chunky for most of my handbags and I was attracted to the streamlined look of the Filofax binder. 3) Though a bit crunched for room due to the narrower Filofax paper, I do prefer it over the wider FC paper. I can't really say why.

    However, I DO miss the day on two page inserts which were the ONLY inserts I ever used with FC. I tried the weekly set up and that did not work for me. Although currently I am using WO2P in my Filofax, I'm thinking of purchasing Day Timer Day on 2 Pages or printing some from here. Several people have switched from Filofax to FC but I have switched from FC to Filofax and don't plan to go back. I have found my perfect binder (Personal Malden in Grey).

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Cheryl: I was drawn to the smaller size of the Filofax Personal, too. The extra 1/2 inch on the compact is a definite advantage for writing room and writing comfort but it takes up a lot more space in the purse! I've recently switched to a very small purse, and in a pinch, the personal Malden will still fit. The compact FC doesn't even come close. I'm having trouble deciding between the two systems. I want to switch to FF but I'm still drawn to FC. I just can't decide.

      I'm glad you've settled in and are happy with your new system.

      Delete
    2. That green paper that is been used for twenty years I was once told by Franklin Quest (now Franklin Covey) was created for US GAO - the US Government Accounting Office - then a big user of the planner. And back in the old days, it matched the Greenbriar computer paper everything was printed out on. If anyone disagrees with this explanation or can verify a better one let me know.

      Delete
  4. I love your comparision. I was a FC user (when I used binder style agendas) before I found out about FF. I found that when I was using my FC I only used monthly and weekly pages mainly to track to-dos and appointments. I find that having a community of people who love their agenda/ organiser like here on Philofaxy I now have way more things in my FF. I have sections in there other than monthly and weekly pages. I have to say tho, no offense, some of the comparisons are generalizations. I'm not bashing your comparision its just your personal views of both agenda systems. I have used both and my views are totally different. I only have 3 months worth of weekly pages and 3 months of monthly pages in my FF in a personal Malden with 23mm rings. And I can't live without my monthly pages whether in FC or FF.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's okay if you don't agree. Most of the comparisions are generalizations, as you said. I was trying to make the switch from FC to FF and having trouble. I started analyzing the reasons why and realized there were some differences that were causing the problems for me. Neither system is better than the other. They're just different. And that's perfect because it allows us to choose what works for us. Sounds like you've settled in nicely. And I agree, it's awesome finding a community of people who loves planner as much as I do.


      Delete
  5. Hi Patty,like you I recently discovered Philofaxy and it has transformed my life! A couple of years back I was gifted a pocket raspberry Finsbury,but, not understanding "The Way Of The Filofax" it never got used.No more though,since discovering this site Finn has been pimped to within an inch of her life and now has siblings too! I have also been using the same system as Josh, which is working well for me at the moment. I can honestly say, I would never have thought that anyone could get so much pleasure from a bunch of pages in a binder, but I LOVE IT!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Awesome!!! I love what you said about your Finn being "pimped to within an inch of her life and now has siblings, too!" So funny!

      Delete
  6. Difference #7: Franklin Covey makes a good punch that is far better than the Filofax one!

    Today, I was in Laywine's, Toronto's Filofax retailer, and while waiting to talk with Peter Laywine (Hint: There will be an upcoming "Stockist in the Spotlight'!) I was comparing the Filofax Cuban Slimline with the only slightly more expensive (+15%) L'Agenda Moderne. I'll be honest, the Parisian Company's offering won hands down. It laid flat; the Cuban did not. The Leather was more supple. It folded smaller. I probably would replace the inserts with Filofax, as I found the L'Agenda Moderne's paper a bit heavier, but fountain pen users might love it. One of Laywine's staff said that some Filofax users user the L'Agenda Moderne Inserts due to the paper.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't know about the punch issue since I don't have a FF one but I do know the FC one is cheaper! That FF one is EXPENSIVE! I have had great luck with the FC punch.

      Delete
  7. Think I might need a Filocovey! I use monthly pages tabbed ( although I would kave blank pages back to back as I have just started interleaving a monthly goal list. Then week on one page but then day on two pages for most things. You can get them direct form Filofax. i got mine from France but when I was in the Conduit street store in London last week they also had them there. The monthly is essential for overview but too small to write much other than the basics of advanced appointments. So I might simply write: Meetup London in there. The weekly pages then hold more details of events I am timetabling beyond the dialy pages. So there I might write the event but also my traintimes and the name of the restaurant. I keep aout a months worth of daily pages so that infor will be transferred to those late and I add in more detail that I might only know nearer the time like my shopping list and what I need to remember to take to give to other people of read on the train etc. Of course that is an entirely aspirational example as I have never made a meet up yet!!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Love it! This is exactly why I use FC pages in my Filofax Binder (a personal Malden)! I get the page space I want, with a binder I love. I know this doesn't work for everyone, but I've found the Malden's "floppiness" perfect for fitting the wider inserts. I'm using the DPP Monticello inserts this year, and will be switching to the 2DPP next year since life is getting a bit hectic!

    I don't personally find the pages overdecorated- they just have the simple blue line which adds a bit of color without going over the top. Plus, MONTHLY TABBED PAGES- need I say more? Between those, a few months of daily pages, all of my cards and a tiny "etc." section for notes, I've got my perfect system :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah - the Monticello pages aren't overly decorated. They're a nice, classic style with a bit of color but not too much. I've used those in the past.

      One year I tried using the 7 Habits pages but I hated those. The edges were dark gray so you couldn't write there. I write ALL OVER my pages so I need every bit of space I can get. Those pages were awful. In fact, I abandoned them mid-year for something else.

      I actually put my FC pages in the Malden but the tabs hit the edge. I'm guessing that doesn't bother you?

      Delete
    2. My tabs just barely go over the edge- they are a bit battered and worn by the end of the year but I like my Filo to look used so it doesn't bother me! Plus, it is all worth it for perfect inserts in a perfect binder.

      I also don't keep a pen in the back loop- I added a loop in the front of my binder, so I think that helps prevent the tabs from being crushed :)

      Delete
    3. That would definitely help. The pen loop doesn't fit any of my pens anyway. I'll have to give that another shot.

      Delete
    4. Good Luck! I just ended up buying one of those stick on pen loops for $2 from Staples and have it stuck on a flyleaf at the beginning of my binder- seems to be working!

      Delete
    5. I have got to go to Staples! The nearest one is about 30 minutes away in a part of town I don't get to very often. But I need to just bite the bullet and check it out. I've seen that lots of Philofaxy readers get cool things there.

      Delete
  9. I'm a big fan of the week on two pages format both for FC and FF. But, what I missed most about FC when switching over to FF were the monthly tabs. I know FF has the option but it's not the same. I also like the plainness of FF's inserts (more room for cute washi tape and my own personalization!) but would like the option of the decorated inserts like FC.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I've read a lot of references to Washi tape. What exactly is it?

      Delete
    2. It is a repositionable paper tape, which now is available in so many sizes, colors, and patterns :)

      Delete
  10. Hmm, based on this comparison, it seems I'm an FC type in filofax's clothing. ;-) I use Filofax products but do all the things that FC users do: I have a full year of monthly inserts, two months worth of daily pages where my to dos and appointments go, I keep my past diary inserts (though I only started that in 2009), and I don't color or design my own inserts. I like the clean, vast space that the ff inserts provide.

    I used to use the week on two pages, and when I decided to switch, it took some getting used to. But the weekly pages didn't allow for all of the information I like to keep in a day. I do have master lists in my tabbed sections and in other binders (depending on what the task is), but I move an item or two to a specific day when I know I'll have time to work on it. This does mean that I have multiple lists in different places, some tasks on more than one list. But it's the best way for me to know what's a priority and what can wait.

    In very general terms (because obviously, it's different for different people) but it seems that FC gears their products to a more professional level whereas Filofax gears their products for more personal use. True, some people cross over or overlap. And some even create their own hybrids. And of course, the only thing that matters is that whatever you use works for you - but that's the joy of both products - you can make them work however you need them!

    Great post!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I agree that FC gears their products toward professionals. For years all the binders were brown, black or burgandy. It's only been in the last 10 years or so that they've included other colors. I tried to get my daughter-in-law started on FC but she hated the boring binders.

      I think that what you're doing is what I want to do. I want to use Filofax but I want to use it like FC. I'm still trying to figure that out.

      Delete
    2. Hi Patty. You may just want to break down and by the Day Timer 2DPP and their 4PPM tabbed. I think this would replicate FC pretty well but in a page size that is the same as FF. They also have storage binders for your yearly archiving. It seems that your planning style is what is being comprimised and it may be difficult to resolve with FF pages - at least not in an orderly fashion. I agree the FC binders can be quite unwieldy and the new system with a FF binder would resolve that. They are both good planners but FF inserts can be a problem for people that need more structure or like better paper quality. Just something to think about. Hope you feel back at home soon.

      Delete
    3. Savannah, I have actually thought about that. I looked on the Day Timer website a while back and there were hardly any options for the personal 2ppd. I need to look again just to be sure I didn't miss something.

      You hit the nail on the head - I do need structure! That has definitely been my problem with the FF pages. Not quite enough structure. And I like highlighting things when I complete them and highlighting doesn't work on those thin pages.

      Thanks for the suggestion. I'm going to take a look at the Day Timer site right now.

      Delete
    4. Patty, if you're interested, I have detailed my system and how I use it here:

      http://wellplannedlife.blogspot.com/2012/08/the-planning-process.html

      I use the dpp inserts rather than the 2ppd but I hope it helps you see how one can be an FC planner with a FF. ;-)

      Delete
  11. Washi tape is a type of masking tape,it comes in loads of colours and patterns.In theory it is re-positional, but I haven't yet tried peeling it off of Filofax paper! Finn wouldn't be seen dead without a generous application to practically every page.Love your post.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Good to know. I'll have to look for some of that.

      And thanks!

      Delete
  12. Washi tape is a type of masking tape,it comes in loads of colours and patterns.In theory it is re-positional, but I haven't yet tried peeling it off of Filofax paper! Finn wouldn't be seen dead without a generous application to practically every page.Love your post.

    ReplyDelete
  13. This post is very timely for me, as I finally worked up the courage to dedicate myself to one diary format for 2013, and invested in the lovely Serenity Day on 2 pages by FC...I've trimmed about 8mm(?) from the punched/inner side of the pages, and repunched the pages(a mammoth task as I only have the single-hole punch....I did three months before getting bored and leaving the rest aside to do later in the year :)
    I absolutely love it. It has enough space in this format to keep EVERYTHING in view and, as stated in the post, I keep a few separate sections for projects. I love the colours of the Serenity set, and whilst yes there's little room for creativity, I found myself growing tired of using my spare time to decorate/personalise [essentially replicating FC] my FF pages...it's a very time consuming hobby for someone trying to organise in order to have more free time to do real tasks.

    So if you don't mind dedicating an hour or two each year to re-punching the inserts (in order to stop them sticking out beyond your FF binder) I strongly recommend these inserts.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am doing the same thing this year luckily I have a rapesco punch I got from amazon to make punching go faster. I love this set up and will continue using it. I have the tabbed months with day on 2 pages( I plan to carry only 1 month at a time). I am using the Her point of view inserts.

      Delete
    2. I'm putting a Rapesco hole punch on my wishlist ^_^ Yes I plan to keep all of the tabbed montly sections in my binder and I'll only slot one month's worth of Do2P behind the current month's tab. I'm really looking forward to using it!

      Delete
  14. Wow! You two are dedicated! That's a lot of work, especially with a single hole punch. I'm impressed.

    The FC 2ppd is a great set-up. That's the one I've used since 1993. It has enough room for everything I need to do. I use my Notes pages as a journal, too. I have tons of notes about things my kids did. It's fun to go back through and read them.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dedication and insanity share a fine line ;) My pet-peeve with past layouts (DPP/Wo2P) has been the lack of distinction between my appointments/to-dos and the general notes I want to make along the way (which I'll now be able to find readily in the future as they stay safely on that big empty notes section)

      Delete
  15. I recently switched from an A5 Filofax to the FC Compact 2PPD inserts in an FC Compact binder (well, you all read about it on my blog anyway ... ;-)).
    I find the page size is the ideal compromise between Filofax A5 and Filofax Personal. I absolutely love the 2PPD inserts. I chose the Original because I can scribble on any edge of the page without some pictures or decorations getting in the way. I also find it soothing, because I also colorcode and it would all become too bright if I had color on my inserts as well.
    And then: tabbed monthly inserts! They have totally replaced my Forward planning on weekly pages. The monthlies (with lines!) suffice completely.
    Also absolutely adore the Index pages. I leave the past monthlies in my planner, so I can always review events back through the index.
    Another big plus: the pouch pagefinder! I stick my weekly Todo and Goals list and have it visible every single day.
    I use the righthand side of my daily pages for my Work Todo's and the rest to log/journal about my day. Haven't missed one single day since I started this. LOOOOOOVE!
    Good luck with your dicision making. Let us know which side of the scale tipped!

    ReplyDelete
  16. Thanks, Jotje. I'll keep you posted!

    ReplyDelete
  17. What a fabulous post! Thank you!!!

    ReplyDelete
  18. I am in LOVE with the FC Mo2P tabbed! WHY don't FF do a grid layout with tabs?

    ReplyDelete
  19. i'm struggling to decide between the FC classic size planner and the Filofax A5. I'm over in the US for a few weeks and actually brought over a few blanks sheets of A5 paper to carry into Staples and Office Depot to compare the sizes with the FC Classic size, which is a wee bit smaller....

    I'm infatuated with these FC monthly tabs, as well as the day on 2 pages.... However, FC calendars start the week on Sunday, which is frustrating. I prefer the weeks beginning on Monday, with my weekend sitting nicely together at the end of the week...

    I'm concerned that the A5 paper I could eventually hole-punch and insert into the FC planner would cover up the tabs and inserts, the paper being ever-so-slightly larger...

    Also, I like that Filofax has loads of little goodies to insert into their planners...

    So add me to the list of folks wishing that Filofax would offer these monthly tabs like FC with all of that beautiful space to capture to do items.... I love that!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We have some you could print out and interleave or add your own tabs to in the right size.

      http://philofaxy.blogspot.com/2013/02/new-filofax-a5-diary-layout-for-free.html

      Delete

Related Posts with Thumbnails