Sometimes the smallest thing can improve your workflow in ways you never could have imagined. Sometimes, we hardly even realize an improvement has happened. I hadn't thought about writing this post until very recently when at MarketMeSuite, we recently updated our "Autocomplete" feature, which allows users to just type the first couple of letters and a list is generated so they can choose the user and have it spelled right in an instant. The response we've received was unanticipated... we thought "this is a nice little feature," but our users are absolutely gushing about how much time it saves. We just happened to hit the nail on the head this time with something that improved a number of people's workflow.
In a world that moves so quick that you can do business in 140 characters or less, it's important to find ways to simplify.
Here's a list of 5 ways I have dramatically improved my workflow this year:
Seems simple - it's basically your calendar, and you can invite people to events. Many people would think Google Calendar would suffice, but this little beauty has saved me so much time. Someone wants to talk about doing a webinar? I say "here's my tungle calendar, picks some times." The burden is now on them to suggest at least 3 times that match up with current availability on my schedule. My favorite part is that you can have tungle override free time on your own Google Calendar to only present times that you are actually conducting business. I may not have something planned at 3am on my Google Calendar but that doesn't mean I want someone to suggest we should have a meeting then, and with so many time zones in the world, that could happen! Recently they've also added a pretty serious social element to it. They give you insights from data collected from social networks about who you are going to meet with, essentially prepping you.
I love this company. Such a simple idea, to share folders across your team, but unbelievably effective. It doesn't seem like much time saved to stick something in drop box instead of attaching to an email, but from a workflow perspective it's fantastic.
3. Apple Mail
Before moving to the Apple Mail client I used Gmail, but I found I was having a hard time keeping up with important emails, even with priority inbox. It definitely took some tweaking around to get it working perfectly, but now that I have it set up with smart inboxes I wonder how I actually lived without it. Down side is that on my mobile devices I still have to use gmail so there's a little bit of back and forth. I found by bcc'ing myself on anything sent from a mobile device it helps me keep track.
Jing lets you record your screen and easily share your findings. This is great when I need to show someone else on my team what I mean instead of tell them. I've even upgraded to a pro account which lets you share directly to YouTube (which is very inexpensive).
I'm going to include MarketMeSuite's new Autocomplete in here, but make it broader. I really love Autocomplete in any capacity. It's like my own little future predictor. However, funnily enough, autocorrect I don't always love, because all too often it decides what I've typed is something very very different. Someone recently showed me this screenshot which, although hilarious, could be problematic.
Key Takeaway: Make sure you're always looking for little ways to improve your daily workflow. At the time these little tweaks may not seem like much, but just watch, the difference can be amazing.