If you’re anything like me, you spend most days juggling different roles, and trying to give each their share of time and attention.
In my case, I’m a business builder, community volunteer, hard-working mama, partner to my husband, and a friend to some pretty awesome people who I don’t get to play with as often as I’d like to. And some days, it’s just hard to do all that I want and need to do in one little day.
If you find yourself wishing you had an extra hour in your day most days, then you’re going to love this blog post.
IN THIS ARTICLE, I’M SHARING 6 TOOLS I USE EVERY DAY for my business and for my life.
Whether you’re building a small business, working on a virtual team, these tools are guaranteed to save you time, effort, and your sanity.
Many are free and take less than a few minutes to set up. (Pinky swear.)
Ready? Let’s get productive…
#1 – Asana
Asana is a free task and project management tool that’s like a recycling station for all the clutter in my head. (Notice I didn’t say *junk* – there’s a treasure trove of great ideas floating around in there!)
I have separate tabs for separate projects (client work, family finances, my upcoming trip to Oaxaca…) and can easily see what needs to be done, when.
The best part? It’ll only take you about 15 minutes to set up, so you can even do it while you’re waiting for your barista to whip up your oat-milk lavender matcha latte.
#2 – Zoom
Zoom is a free video conferencing tool I used on the daily for team and client meetings, coaching, and teaching.
I do a lot of remote work and using Zoom makes me feel like I’m practically in the same room with colleagues or clients. We can share our screens, record and share the call, and share links or information via chat.
It’s also a great tool for training. Most recently, I taught a virtual university class with thirty students. Every week, I would do live teaching and could use added features to check for understanding or answer questions.
#3 – Evernote
Evernote is a free tool that lets you write yourself mini notes that automatically sync with Evernote on your computer and mobile devices. (You can pay for other features, but I’m a heavy user of the free version.)
I use Evernote to remember just about everything, from my grocery list to those blog ideas that pop into my head at 6 am. I also often take pictures of things I want to keep top of mind, like my favorite brand of coconut water or a pair cute shoes I might want to buy.
I look at Evernote maybe fifty times a day.
#4 – World Time Buddy
I worked abroad for almost a decade across a dozen countries. Now I have friends and clients all over the world. It can feel like complex math trying to find the right time to schedule Skype dates or coaching, but World Time Buddy makes it super easy. You just put in your city and their city and BAM! – you can easily see that breakfast in Buenos Aires is supper in Singapore.
#5 – G-Suite
OK, this one is sort of a mega-tool, like a Swiss Army Knife for your business. It has a lot of super-useful tools within it, but I’ll focus on my top three here.
Once you have a domain name (ie www.wendykotila.com), it’s easy to set up your business email using Google’s “G Suite” for as little as $6/month, or one fancy café latte. You can then set up, for free, other business aliases on that same account, such as email@example.com, or firstname.lastname@example.org. If you’ve got a virtual assistant or other team members, this means you can give them their own email too, so you can stay consistent across the business board!
I have several Gmail aliases (so, so easy to make) – one for personal, one for my volunteer role as an advocate for foster care children, one for a property I own and manage, and one, of course, for business!
Having a work email builds customer trust and shows that you’re taking yourself – and your business seriously.
I have calendars for my business, clients, family, self, dog, and kiddo that can all be seen in one place. Which means I never have to worry about missing a meeting, a birthday, or my mini-me’s school events, because it’s all right there. And when I’m out and about, I love that I can easily see where I need to be just by looking at my calendar on my phone.
Google Calendar also has tons of handy features. I can add participants for meetings, locations, notes and more. And it’s free!
Drive is a collaboration tool that lets you create, edit, share, collaborate, and store in the “Cloud”. This means you can access your stuff from any connected device, share view or edit rights with team mates and customers, and never have to worry about losing your work.
It’s very easy to use and makes working remotely so much easier!
#6 – LastPass
LastPass is a free(ish) password management tool that I literally use 20-30 times a day. LastPass makes it easy to create strong, unique, and virtually un-hackable passwords that you can access on any mobile device. It also lets you share – and un-share – passwords with family members, clients, and contractors in a safe and controlled manner.
I started using LastPass a few years ago, after I was brutally hacked by a Ukrainian-based jerk face. (More on that, later.) The hacker locked me out of every account I had, including my own business website and my daughter’s Girl Scouts account. It took me about 70 hours to unravel.
Do yourself a favor and avoid the risk of having the same pain. Get LastPass! It’s easy-to-use, free, and a lifesaver.
Now it’s Your Turn:
What tools do you use and love in your daily life and business?
Let’s pile up a treasure trove!
P.S. Struggling with the basics for your budding business?