Whether you have a robust team or your only coworker is your favorite ficus, there are always tools available to you that will save you time. I shared a few of my favorite communication tools that I use daily with my clients and my team, so I wanted to expand on that today to focus on time management tools.
Like the old school “There’s an app for that” commercial, there truly is an app to aid in any area of your productivity. Need to communicate better? Want an easy way to set a timer? I’ve got you covered with my five favorite productivity apps that save me hours in my day. If you’ve ever thought, “Oh crap, what’s my password?” you need at least one tool on this list!
Kiwi for Gmail
I’m not saving the best for last here, I’m going right to my favorite time management tool. I love Kiwi for Gmail! The seconds I’ve saved using Kiwi add up to entire days and that’s only a slight hyperbole!
This app allows you to access all of your Gmail-driven applications — and it keeps you signed in to all of them at the same time. All you have to do is toggle to a particular inbox with a single click and you’re in. No more logging out and in, or using the wrong account to comment on a Google Doc.
We all have a few different Gmail accounts (come on, I know you have at least one personal and one professional—that count could go up if you have access to client inboxes!) and it’s a pain to switch between them.
I mean, how many times have you had to sign out and sign back in under a different account to get to the right Drive folder? What about adding appointments to the correct calendar? I rest my case.
Slack makes team collaboration so seamless, I forget what it was like before it was created. It reminds me a little bit of old school chat rooms, but without the creepy guys asking for your location. Slack’s interface is streamlined and the different channels, direct messages, and notifications keep you organized.
Since using Slack, my team has saved so much time. Its casual environment removes the need to type things like “Hey Friend! Hope you’re having a great day!” into an email (in fact, it removes the need to email at all). We can get to the point of a message without the fluff.
It also keeps us organized because you only need to join channels that are relevant to you, so no more “reply all” nonsense that doesn’t pertain to the project you’re working on.
Success Tip: Set up a DM with yourself and use it as a reminder stream. You can ask the program to pop in with a reminder in a few minutes or a few days, and you can set messages to “unread” so they stay highlighted in your stream until you complete them.
Voxer is another app I love to use with my team to cut down time spent in my inbox and I also love using this with my clients. Think of this tool as a love child between texting and voicemail. Or think of it as a modern-day version of a walkie talkie. Either way, definitely think of this app if you need to talk things out with your team or clients.
I’ve had real-time conversations with this app and I’ve also been able to record a message for the recipient to listen to at their leisure.
What I love about Voxer may seem a little too simple. The biggest benefit of Voxer is that you can talk things out. Talking is so much faster than typing (and listening to someone’s words ensures that the tone of messages isn’t left to the interpretation of the reader). Along with Slack, Voxer is why my team doesn’t need email.
This is also a time saver with my clients. I can clarify what they’re saying to me and provide a quick response that answers the question they’re really asking without going back and forth or having them wait until their next coaching call.
How many times have you typed your password, only to be met with a message saying it wasn’t right and you had to reset it. (And then, how many times did you discover you were using the right password when you reset it because it yelled at you to use a different phrase than the one you’re currently using!)
Lastpass has, of course, saved me time. And it’s also saved years on my life because I no longer have the frustration of playing the But That’s The Password I Typed Before!!! Game. I also free up the brainspace dedicated to remembering what my AOL password is. For some reason, I still know that password (even though I haven’t used AOL in ages) yet I don’t remember a password I type in semi-regularly.
Just use the extension or autofill in passwords and Lastpass takes care of the rest. It’s great for teams (so only the people who need to know my password actually do) and the peace of mind is incredible.
I NEVER thought I’d be *that person* who relies on artificial intelligence, but Alexa has totally changed the game for me. The one on my desk is integrated with my calendar, so I can ask about my next appointments. I can easily set reminders, start a timer, do simple calculations… really dumb stuff that you think “I don’t need a robot to tell me that.”
She saves me time and takes pressure off my brain to remember what’s going on. Alexa also helps me give myself completely over to whatever I’m doing without worrying that I’ve gone over my time limit. It’s silly and yet I love that she can keep me on task so I can focus on what I’m doing.
There are only 24 hours in the day and not all of them can be spent on email and typing in passwords. Using tools to help you be more focused and productive is a smart way to reclaim your time and help you maximize the hours you’re given every day.
I’m curious, what’s your favorite time management tool? Let me know in the comments and let’s be even more productive together!