As another September draws near and the last quarter approaches — our last chance to pull out all the stops and exceed the goals set at the beginning of the year — I can really work myself up. With the daily demands of running a business, servicing clients, writing blog posts, speaking, networking, AND having a life outside of the office, it can feel a little overwhelming. So many ideas, meetings and calls require more focused concentration and organization, admittedly, is not my natural strong suit. Lately I've been looking into some apps that might help me — and maybe you — become more efficient.
Seven Apps to Help You Get Organized & More Productive
- Addappt: Addappt continually updates your iOS address book as well as updating your contacts when personal information changes. This automatic, and convenient, feature is great for the fast-paced business world, allowing you to focus on more important business tasks. While it seems like another one of those apps that aim to replace a basic function already built into the iPhone (why bother if I already have an address book?), it automatically updates contact information among its users, a convenience many people on the go will appreciate. However, the app is only available for iOS, therefore limiting other audiences who might be eager to give it a try.
- Neverlate: Not just a navigation app, NeverLate helps you 24/7 by telling you when to leave home, work or any other place in order to get to your destination on time. Traffic issues? No worries, NeverLate will alert you based on the traffic situation telling you when to leave to be on time. You can always see the current traffic situation, including comparative traffic and what the drive time is right now on your regular routes. Pretty cool.
- Evernote: Still use post-it notes and hand-written lists? Evernote draws me with the cool video demos that promise to give me the ability to sync all my notes, lists and reminders across any platform to one place. And then reminding my phone, computer or tablet when it's time to do something. It looks fantastic, claiming it will help with research, keep sketches on file, plan your next vacation, but it also looks like it would take some time to learn and get used to. There are many features that I don't know if I'd take the time to fully explore (as a creature of bad habits already)! But maybe. . .
- Any.do: Any.do is an award-winning task list app. Winner of Apple's 2012 "intuitive touch," and Android best app 2012, for its clean & simple to use design and innovative features. This To Do list app looks simple and clean, and might just help me get rid of the manual notes. This also reminds me of another neat app called TeuxDeux, which has a beautiful interface (important to the designer in me). Simplicity is beautiful, so these both show promise.
- Pocket: I already use this app and love it. It's a service formerly known as Read it Later for creating and saving a reading list that can be accessed online or offline. What I love, is that if I begin to get distracted by going deeper and deeper into the web, I can stop, click the "pocket" on my web browser and save the page (and categorize) to go back and view or read later. This is great for saving TedTalks, articles written by colleagues, anything that might distract you from the task at hand. And it syncs with my GetPocket iPhone app.
- Tempo: A smart calendar app that syncs your calendars with the people involved in each event, as well as the correspondence with those people. Tempo connects with your existing accounts and displays information about your schedule for the day, pulls contact information from LinkedIn and correspondence information from your email. Also, the days of digging through emails for documents is over. Tempo collects all relevant documents and connects them with the corresponding meetings and topics. Tempo does a wonderful job explaining how the app works through the story below—look for the subtle dig at apple's calendar!
- Finally, not as much for business, but this little app came in so handy on my vacation. When a group of friends each contributed for various things: a meal here, hotel reservations there, a shuttle fee, car rental, etc., etc. trying to come up with who owed whom what at the end of the trip was a little confusing. Kittysplit.com was great, and works on your desktop, tablet or mobile. After calculating, it also figures out the easiest way to make payments, taking all factors into account.
What are your favorite productivity tools and apps? Have any experience with the ones I've shared? I'd love to hear your comments. Enjoy the rest of your summer! Here we come, fall!
(7 apps for organizing / shutterstock)