For years now I’ve been slightly obsessed about how to be more productive with limited time.
The tools below helped me streamline my work so I can focus on what matters in my business. Many of the programs are designed for Macs, however, you can find their analogues for a Windows PC with a quick search online.
- Tame your email – We all get bombarded by emails and one of the most productive things I haver done was to figure out how to control my inbox. I use Gmail for personal and work emails because it works well enough and is pretty powerful but you can adapt the advice below to Outlook or any other email client. The first step I took was to unsubscribe from all the different newsletters I get. For the ones I actually want to get I just create a filter in Gmail so it skips my inbox. I unsubscribed from them manually; however, there is a website called Unroll.me which does it automatically for you. The second step is that I use an application called Boomerang for Gmail, which allows me to either schedule an email to go out at a future time, or to take a message out of my inbox and put it back in the inbox at a time I set. This helps a lot in managing email overflow and to time your emails to your manager so it looks like you’re an early bird.
- Access your files anywhere– Sometimes you’re on the run and need to access a file on your computer. For that I use a cloud service called Dropbox. I’ve tried companies such as Carbonite, Box, and SugarSync; however, Dropbox has been the easiest to use and pretty powerful. The added benefit of using Dropbox, or any cloud backup, for your files is that if your computer crashes or is stolen, then you still have your data.
- Choose the right browser– Many people don’t think about it, but the browser you use daily is very important. I’ve seen many friends and clients who stick with Internet Explorer either at home or at work. Personally, I consider Internet Explorer the most problematic browser. This wreaks havoc on your productivity, because many times it will either run slow or something will break and the website will not appear correctly. My advice is to use Google Chrome, which is a newer browser and in my opinion much more powerful. Many of us spend hours on our computers and hopefully this advice has helped you to reclaim some of those hours and put them to better use. Stay tuned for a continuation of this article with even more tools to automate your workflow to be more productive.