6 Productivity Tools You Can’t Live Without

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Everyone’s talking about productivity. So I want to talk about some productivity apps I don’t think you can live without. We use all of these apps, so this isn’t just a list of things I saw and thought looked neat. We actually use this stuff.

Google Calendar

Google Calendar is awesome. You can manage multiple calendars on one program. You can have your family calendar that’s color coded in a certain way, your work calendar, you can have everything integrated into a single location. I know if I have everything in separate locations I’ll forget that school registration is this day and schedule something over it. So, instead of doing that, I try to keep everything in one place on Google Calendar.

It probably does more than you’re aware of. I’ve seen some awesome videos on organization with Google Calendar, and it’s just really an amazing tool. I don’t think anybody really uses it to its full capacity. 

Doodle

This is one of the two on this list that isn’t free – it’s $6 a month. This scheduling allows you to sync all your calendars. So if you’re using your phone, then Google Calendar, then some other calendar, it allows you to pull all that into a single location. It will also integrate with your website so you can provide your available times and cut out a lot of back and forth. Customers can directly see when you’re available and, when it’s integrated with your website, create an appointment with you directly through Doodle. You can create time intervals depending on the appointment – if it’s a showing, an hour; a phone call, ten minutes, and so on. 

Doodle also features group scheduling. So if you have a team and you’re trying to see when everyone’s available for a meeting – if you have more than three people, you know that’s a nightmare – everyone marks all the times they’re available. Doodle generates a matrix to find the common ground and finds everyone’s best available time. It’s a really neat tool that helps streamline things so you aren’t going back and forth.

Evernote

This is the second app listed that costs – $7.99 a month. Evernote helps organize all your notes, receipts and papers, but that’s what filing cabinets are for, right? The coolest thing Evernote offers is the scan and search feature. I take notes for everything, so, after meeting with a client, I would scan my notes into Evernote, and then it’s searchable documentation just like it with Google Drive. That’s amazing.

It’s especially wonderful for those who are a bit scattered. You might have a paper notes in one place, paper receipts in another and then some documents online, and Evernote allows you to bring it all together into a central hub. I love it for receipts – I hate paper – so this app allows me to scan and keep it all so I can get rid of the paper. 

Evernote Scannable

I guess this is 3b. If you have the Evernote Scannable app on your phone and go to a networking event, it allows you to scan a business card and it automatically uploads their contact information into your contacts – which is the coolest thing ever. Then you can add a note about where you met this person and what you talked about without getting scattered, forgetting or losing notes.

RescueTime

This is a free time tracker that runs in the background on your computer – if you aren’t afraid to find out where all your time goes during the day because it will tell you. You might think, “It’s OK, I’m only spending like 30 minutes a day on social media,” but this program will tell you how much time you’re actually spending on Facebook or on this contract or crafting emails. 

It’s super helpful if you’re trying to find out where all your time goes. Every team faces this problem: it’s impossible to charge if you don’t know how much time you’re really spending on a project. You have no idea if you’re making money, if you’re breaking even, what your profit is, if you don’t know where your time is going or how much time you’re allocating. If you think it’s taking you an hour and you charge for an hour, but it’s actually taking three hours, that’s brutal. Even if you don’t charge by the hour. If you don’t know your gross, it makes your life more difficult as a business owner. 

Todoist

This is a free online checklist that I really love to use on my computer, but can also be used on your phone. I am the worst about sending my team a midnight or 6 a.m. text, because if I don’t send it immediately, it’s gone. And I don’t want to do that to them. 

So by having it in one master to-do list on Todoist, I can tag certain people as project reminders, then they can check it off once they’ve covered it. I don’t have to ask whether this or that project got done, I can see that it’s checked off the master list and move on. It gets rid of a lot of back and forth.

Grammarly

This is a free grammar check, spell check and plagiarism detection program. For any blog writers, if you’re writing any kind of content for yourself or your website, you need Grammarly. If you think people aren’t reading your work, misspell a word or make a grammatical error. Yikes. It’s a mess.

We use Grammarly for our blog posts; it’s not just spell check. It tells you if it’s grammatically sound and correct. Maybe this or that sentence is a little questionable or awkward and you should rewrite it. I get a lot of that. Maybe this content from a client just doesn’t look or read right. Grammarly helps you get through that and kind of get a better idea of how it’s sounding, if it’s really correct and if it’s something you need to keep.

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