At the top of many entrepreneurs' list of goals is increasing productivity. With so much going on, entrepreneurs are always on the go -- traveling to and from meetings, connecting at networking events, managing business operations and so much more.
But thanks to technology, being on the go doesn't mean you can't be productive. For me, being away from the office actually means I get more done. I can work from anywhere as long as I have a phone and internet access. To keep me organized and productive on the go, I've learned to embrace the following great tools and techniques:
If you're anything like me, your inbox is probably exploding with emails. Add the complexity of being on the go, and focusing on important emails is even more difficult. So, how do you sort through all your emails and not waste time on non-urgent messages or spam?
I use SaneBox, an email management tool that allows you to filter unimportant email out of your inbox so you can focus on the important messages. By creating custom filters, you can dedicate time to check your email a few times a day and know that you'll only be looking at emails that require your attention. Typically, I'll go to an empty conference room and tackle the messages that require my attention. The reduced distractions really do make a difference.
Whether you're scheduling a follow-up meeting or are reaching out to connect with someone you just met, scheduling meetings can be a hassle. And with a calendar that's pretty hectic as is, scheduling my own meetings just seems like a waste of time.
I've become a huge fan of automation, as it truly frees you up to do more important tasks. Save yourself time by using meeting and scheduling tools like X.ai. This allows you to schedule meetings without the back and forth of trying to set a time. Like magic, your invite arrives in your inbox!
Be sure to keep your calendar updated as well, and have a handy link to it so that no matter where you are, you can quickly and easily check your calendar. It also helps to block out time on certain days to make sure you always have an opening for unplanned meetings or things that might come up.
Pitch Decks and Presentations
Whether you're going to a big meeting or simply meeting with an existing client or vendor, pitch decks and presentations are typically imperative. However, a lot can change in a short period of time. That's why being able to edit them on the fly can be a lifesaver.
Tools like Google Slides can help you create and edit presentations on the go from any device, including your phone and tablet. It's that easy. Forgot to add pricing to your prospect's presentation? Just learned a big piece of information that will change the way you're presenting your pitch? You can edit it on the fly.
I love using Google Slides as it is simple to use and I can edit from my phone. I can be found on a plane polishing up a presentation or creating a proposal without worrying about the final version or "hard copy" I may have left behind.
If there's anything I've learned in my 10 years as an entrepreneur, it's that automation is key to improving productivity. This means taking out redundant steps or putting technology in place to manage a variety of tasks or even other tools.
A great tool for automation is IFTTT. It allows you to connect a variety of services and apps you already use to trigger specific actions on your behalf. Things like auto-posting to social channels, automatically backing up photos to your Dropbox account, saving specific content to your Evernote account, turning off the lights or pushing a reminder to your phone can all be done with a simple setup.
Now that we're off in a new year, be sure to look for ways to become more productive and let yourself focus on the big picture activities and tasks that will drive your business forward. For everything else, look for a tool to save you time.
As the founder and CEO of OneIMS and Clickx, Solomon Thimothy has built his career around his passion for helping other businesses grow an online presence and thrive in the digital world.