In the last post, Emily Parks, professional organizer and owner of Organize for Success, explored my question of how to increase our productivity, especially with so many conflicting priorities. She explored productivity tools to help manage passwords and data online. Here, Emily continues by explaining how using social media managers and task management tools can increase efficiency and free your time (and mind) to think — and not remember. After all, we can’t have the memory of an elephant with so many conflicting priorities in our daily lives.
I asked Emily: What are some additional tools or solutions you would recommend to help manage time and make the busy professionals on my in-house team and others more productive?
Emily: Ed, social media is impacting the way brands communicate with their stakeholders. Streamlining functionality and measuring success can be extremely time consuming with all the various social media channels that exist. By connecting information between social media profiles, photos, status updates and events on your calendar, you’ll save yourself a great deal of time.
There are several social media managers that can empower you to better manage multiple social profiles: scheduling posts, tracking mentions and analyzing results including traffic and interactions are a few examples. Consider your specific needs and then evaluate if Buffer, Hootsuite, Postling, SocialOomph or Sprout Social might best meet those associated goals. Each option will most likely have a free trial.
Are you finding that you don’t have time to research the person you’ll be meeting with next? Find out if there are timely topics of interest you should address in your meeting with this person has become much easier with the Refresh mobile app. Refresh delivers a complete dossier instantly to your iPhone via its free mobile app, preparing you as you’re headed into a meeting by telling you what you need to know about the person so you can spark a more authentic connection.
Plus, keep in mind that our brains are made to think, not remember, which is why using technology to alleviate such drains on our minds can be so vital for expanding our capabilities.
If you use a cloud-based solution for your customer relationship management tool, you have one place to look for all information related to that relationship, including all interactions, communications, business transactions and general experiences.
You can get electronic reminders for whatever you program into the system, so you’re less likely to forget important commitments or let things fall between the cracks. Scalable options include Infusionsoft, Insightly, Nimble and Zoho. Likewise, if you use a cloud-based solution for your task management tool, you can set-up reminders, establish recurrences and more easily carry over unfinished tasks from day-to-day. Available options for task managers include Any.Do, Carrot, iOS Reminders, Pocket Informant Pro, Remember The Milk and Wunderlist.
While streamlining and automating are a superb start, there are additional options to consider for outsourcing functionality. Yes, utilizing the strengths of your team is extremely important; however, there are some tasks for which others are better trained and there is little benefit in your team members investing the time to gather such expertise.
Further, there are some administrative tasks that are simply not a good utilization of your time and your team’s talent. For each of these options, consider what can be found via Fiverr or Task Rabbit. They offer cost-effective solutions to get more done.
Compare which online tools can be partnered via IFTTT, Zapier and Podbox. Check which tool offers the most pairings applicable to your needs and then test the combinations for your needs. These tools work like magic to have things happen automatically!
More excellent advice, Emily. Thank you!
About Emily Parks
Emily Parks, owner of Organize for Success, is a member of the National Association of Professional Organizers & the Institute for Challenging Disorganization as well as a graduate of the Institute for Professional Organizers. With a background in automotive marketing and college sports operations, Emily provides confidential, one-on-one consulting (in-person or via Skype) and team training, helping you increase efficiency, boost productivity, accomplish more in less time, quickly locate what you need when you need it and maximize your physical space for optimal output.