One of the characteristics of a good business leader, whether you own a small business or large corporation, is the ability to stay organized. If you feel like you are always searching for items or find it hard to stay productive, you may need to “tweak” your organizational skills. Thankfully, technology has come a long way to help you get organized and stay that way from the moment you walk into work until the lights go out at closing. Here are some apps to consider that your IT department could easily put on your mobile devices.
- To Do Lists – Do you need to maintain a running list of items that need to be accomplished either short or long term? There are apps that can help you quickly jot down items that may slip through the cracks during a busy work day. Two such app are Wunderlist which allows you to share work project lists and EasilyDo which allows for task lists to be prioritized and distributed to employees.
- Note Taking – We have all been in meetings where we need to take notes, copy and share them with other members of the team. Evernote is a note taking application that lets you record and collect information that you have found interest in. You can also share your notes with your team members using this application.
- Financial Organization – Organization specifically geared toward financial expenses can be easily tracked using Expensify. This app allows you to take pictures of your receipts and store them all on one convenient dashboard.
- Appointments and Event Organizing – As a business leader or manager, there are probably a million appointments, phone calls or conferences that you attend annually. Keeping those dates and times organized can be simple when using Google Calendar or Doodle. These apps allow you to manage and track your calendars across multiple platforms that include Outlook, Gmail, and Yahoo.
Among several new projects and updates that Microsoft has in the works, they recently released a major new update. Windows 10 Fall Creators Update is set to have a release this September.
The Fall Creators Update will be the official debut of Microsoft’s Fluent Design System, previously known as Project Neon. This interface allows building apps that can work across several devices and input types. Although, there are more features to come, this update will bring a new focus to bring Windows experiences to Android and iOS devices.
With this new update, it is including four key new additions:
- Timeline – Timeline is a feature that helps improve the task view area to provide a list of apps and workspaces that were in use previously in your device or on your devices as well.
- Pick up where you left off – This new feature combines with Timeline, as it allows you to resume apps and sessions on multiple devices. This feature will specifically be useful and helpful on mobile devices.
- OneDrive files On-Demand – Similar to Microsoft’s placeholder files, this feature will let you easily fetch files from OneDrive without having to sync them or download entire folders all at once. Instead, OneDrive allows users to pick out data from the cloud whenever it is needed–making it faster and easier. With this feature, it will help decrease the amount of space required for the files, as you’ll mostly use this feature while online and only meant to pull out the files that are needed at the moment.
- Clipboard – Similar to Apple’s universal clipboard, the clipboard feature will help roam across Windows, iOS, and Android as it will allow users to copy content from a PC and paste it straight on a phone.
Majority of these features work and compliment each other as it makes experiences for users much easier and better to use. However, more features will continue to be developed and released as the release date gets closer.
Communication is key in the business world whether it is relaying critical information to employees or staying up-to-date with clients. In order to maintain adequate communication, no matter who with, having a proven method or protocol can assist greatly at work. In this blog, let’s continue examining how technology can help you communicate better.
What type of communication do you use now: email, instant messaging or phone calls? Is it working or does it need to be streamlined to make communication more effective? If you are looking to enhance your communication or develop new strategies to stay in touch, consider these advancements on technology to help guide you along the way.
- Slack – This app is one of the most popular ways for internal teams to collaborate. Slack features chat rooms organized by topic, private groups, and direct messaging. Files, groups, and members are all completely searchable, making it easy to pull up previous conversations. It’s available for web, iOS, Android, and Windows Phone. [slack.com]
- BaseCamp – If you need to maintain regular communication with clients BaseCamp may be a viable choice. It is designed to make it easy for people in different departments within a company to share files and collaborate on projects. By consolidating internal communications, project management, and client relations in one place, it provides an efficient and streamlined solution for managing a variety of internal communication and collaboration needs. Basecamp’s discussion boards eliminate the need for complex, hard-to-navigate email chains by consolidating discussion about a subject in one place. It also manages tasks and to-do lists for staff members. [basecamp.com]
- DialMyCalls – If your business prefers to alert customers of upcoming events, appointments or due dates DialMyCalls may be the method for you. Many businesses use DialMyCalls to send out important notifications to employees, or to remind staff of upcoming events, meetings, or due dates. It’s also useful for reaching out to employees to cover shifts when someone gets sick or needs to miss work because of a personal emergency.
In our last blog we began looking at technology solutions for busy business leaders and managers. We explored organization and how advancements in applications can help you get organized and stay organized. In this blog we will continue to look at technology, but shift gears towards time management applications and tips.
There are hundreds of apps out there, mostly free, that can help you keep track of your precious time whether you need to bill clients per hour or just as a way to stay productive and on task. Using your time wisely can become a little bit easier if you try to track and monitor how your time is spent and where it may be wasted.
- Project Tracking – Ever wonder at the end of a large project how many hours were spent on the actual work? It would be great to know if the end justify the means or if possibly you wasted time somewhere along the way. Toggl is a great app that can help you track how much time you spend on different projects. Effective time management starts with being clear on exactly how much time you actually spend on your projects and tasks, and then analyze how you can manage them more effectively.
- Staying on Task – If you or any of your employees have trouble staying on one project at a time or get caught up multitasking an app that helps them focus may be helpful. Focus Booster is an app that us based on the pomodoro technique, that helps employees maintain focus and manage distractions.
- Planning – Part of time management is planning ahead on what needs to be done on each project you are tasked with. Mindmapping is a great productivity technique, and Mind42 is the best free mind mapping app. It helps you to get more organized by focusing your thoughts thereby gaining clarity on what needs to be done.