14 Productivity Tools to Improve Efficiency
Being human, we are subjected to hundreds of distractions every day. And even the most motivated individual experiences moments when his will is shaken by repetitions, easy access to distractions, and complex tasks.
Here are 14 very powerful tools to help you reduce daunting tasks, perform some tasks faster, and use your time efficiently:
Pocket allows you to capture a link, which will be stored in memory and synchronized on all your devices, for later viewing. This way, you no longer waste time and interrupt yourself to read an article, a page that you have just received by email, notification or other.
The ideal use is to accumulate links for several days, then view them all in due course, and at the right time. Grouping your tasks is a simple rule to increase your productivity, and Pocket helps you to group information consumption.
You spent 10 hours non-stop working on your computer, and yet you didn’t accomplish anything new? Rescue Time will save you the day. Rescue Time allows you to analyze your Internet usage. It will tell, exactly how much time you spend checking emails, reading the information, surfing online, chatting, etc. You can then schedule alerts to help you limit leisure activities, or even automatically block certain sites… and focus on work!
Even if its main use is to store and synchronize your files everywhere, Dropbox is also an excellent tool to share files with your partners, employees, customers, service providers etc.
Using the shared folders, any file you put in, will immediately be synchronized on the machine. Ideal for working with your employees or service providers, no need to write and send emails for each file, and no need for the recipient to save the file. Or you can create a link for each file in your Dropbox.
This way, you can very easily share any file with anyone (and delete the link when the sharing is finished). No need to send the file to an online service or by email, the sharing is instantaneous, saving you and your team an incredible amount of time in sending and receiving files.
Amazon Mechanical Turk
With Amazon Mechanical Turk, you can relieve yourself of all the most tedious tasks and assign them to the Internet community, while you focus on more important tasks. You publish your project, allowing several hundred Internet users to work on the project at the same time.
For example, you have written a 100-page PDF and want to correct it, publish your “hit” on Amazon Mechanical Turk. Then hundreds of Internet users from all over the world will work on your hits at the same time, allowing you to get your work in a few hours or as and when needed.
This tool allows you to capture, store and retrieve any text, audio, video, pdf, etc. There is in particular a plugin for your browser, allowing you to capture directly a desired element on a page.
Before Evernote, we used to take screenshots, notes, knowledge, examples, lists in TXT files or misplaced folders. And all this took a long time to create, and became difficult to organize. But with Evernote, you can find everything through a simple search (Even images!). The feeling of freedom that Evernote offers by providing a solution to sort through all the notes.
To take a screenshot and explain something, here is the common procedure: Click on Print Scr key, paste the image into “Paint”, save it, open the image in Photoshop or any other image editor, then circle some elements, add text, etc.
You may have done so, if you communicate with service providers, or publish explanations on your website. But this procedure sometimes takes more than an hour. But with Jing, it takes 5 minutes. Jing allows you to take a screenshot, with a simple combination of keys. You choose your area, then using elements highlight certain areas, as required and create explanations (arrows, rectangles, text zones…) and save the image.
You can even couple it with Dropbox and send a link with your providers. Jing also allows you to capture your screen in video, to quickly create and share explanations and procedures.
Use it if you are a service providers and want to get your message across effectively, easily and quickly. Of course, it can be used by anyone.
Interacting with your customers is essential. If you are asked to comment on other blogs, you may have become ill by filling in your name, email, website and then your comment each time.
Easy Comment is a simple plugin for Firefox, which allows you to create one or more profiles with your pre-filled information, then whenever you want to leave a comment on a blog, simply click on the plugin (at the bottom of your browser), to pre-fill all your information automatically. All you have to do is write the comment.
You save a good 15 seconds for each comment, but the biggest advantage is to remove this extremely daunting task, in order to give the best of yourself in the comment.
GoalMap is a wellness and personal development coaching application. This motivational app will be your partner to motivate and look after you by offering you support. Say goodbye to the routine! With this application, you will learn new habits and save time on other tasks.
No more wasting time to recover your passwords! Dashlane is a tool to manage passwords in the best possible way. Whether you are on a PC, smartphones or tablets, the application stores your passwords, bank details, anywhere on the web. All protected by a single password. They are then automatically generated when you go to a platform.
Cleanfox cleans your inbox while taking care of the planet. The start-up allows you to delete and unsubscribe from newsletters in one click, reducing your carbon footprint. You can thus regain control of your mailbox by no longer wasting time sorting through the thousands of newsletters received every day.
After sorting through your emails, it’s time to get organized. M3 Journal allows you to better organize yourself on a daily basis. Inside this journal, you will find tools to hack into your productivity and achieve your first goals in less than three months.
Asana makes it easier to manage your tasks. This tool will allow you to promote teamwork without using email. As a project manager, you will be able to follow the progress of your work with precision, but also that of others.
A real practical and efficient monitoring tool, Feedly concentrates the flow of articles from a personal selection. The user chooses the themes and media to follow in order to receive a selection of articles that correspond to him/her. You can also trust Google Alerts to keep you informed of the latest news.
Finally, Streak is a Chrome and Safari plugin attached to your Gmail mailbox. The user can receive an acknowledgement of receipt when the recipient has received the email. In addition to being a real mail tracker, the user can type a keyword and have a sample mail extract and send it on the date and time he wants by scheduling via the tool.
These 14 productivity tools are simple tools, but they can make a huge difference in your daily life, and help you boost your productivity in many ways. And these tools will help you work better, to do the same as now, but faster and more efficiently, while safeguarding your motivation.
You don’t have to work hard everytime, being smarter is the key.
What tools do you use to improve your productivity? Mention in the comment section below.