With so many tools for productivity, we’re spoiled for choice. If you are an entrepreneur or the CEO of a company, you cannot afford pedestrian productivity problems that can set your business back.
And, you don’t want to be flooded with big fat laundry lists of ‘Must Have’ or ‘Can’t Live Without’ tools.
This is the reason why I have come up with this cool list for you. List of top 10 productivity tools that are free or very cheap and that you must use to be more effective in your business.
In this 5 minute read, you will get …
- Few insights over the most pressing issues that entrepreneurs face.
- Some cool tools that help you address these issues well.
Ready? Then Let’s get started…
“If everything is important, then nothing is.”
In this age of information overload, it’s easy to get distracted. Hence, before you manage your time it’s more important to manage your attention.
Here are some of the much appreciated free tools to help you keep your focus ON:
Evernote: It lets you prioritize your to-do list, store all your notes, projects, ideas, read-later e-mails, and blogs.
Stayfocusd: An anti-distraction chrome browser extension that is configurable to restrict the amount of time you spend on time-wasting websites.
SaneBox: saves you from endless e-mail interruptions; it learns what emails are important to you and filters out what aren’t. Though it isn’t free, but it is a price worth paid for saving you from endless interruptions.
The single most important step to increase your productivity is to focus only on your most important tasks and say ‘NO’ to the rest. You might want to read these insightful tips on How to Focus Right
Apart from personal productivity, you also need to care for your team’s productivity. You must ensure that everyone is on the same page with clear and timely communication. The tools that can help you with this are:
Slack : While there are many free and paid tools for better team communication. Most of the CEOs I have met are simply in love with Slack – built for better team communication.
BaseCamp/ Trello/ Asana/ Milanote / ProofHub/ ProProfs Project: You can choose any one of these for Task Management and collaboration. To know which one suits your business, you can read comparison of these task management tools here
An entrepreneur must love processes to grow. You must opt for documenting the process for any task that is done repeatedly or by more than one person. Well documented and automated processes will help you delegate operations. And will let you focus on your most important growth functions well.
ProcessMaker/ KissFlow /Bitrix24: These are some of the popular business process or workflow design softwares that will help you in simplifying & automation.
Yed: This is an interesting way to create easy diagrams for your processes.
As per CEO of Pixlee, A small business CEO spends 21% of his time on talent acquisition and management. For many other CEOs it is more than 25%. Not only it is a huge share of your time investment, but also it is one of the most important.
You will all agree that hiring right is not just important, it is essential. And, below are some great tools out there to help you in your recruitment efforts.
Osclass: No need to install anything and absolutely free. You can manage your vacancies and candidates profiles from anywhere at any time, you only need a browser and internet connection. Ideal for Small Businesses
Interview Mocha: Your time is precious… isn’t it? So you must make sure that you are spending time interviewing only the relevant candidates. Interview Mocha maintains updated inventory of skill tests that help you filter your applicants before you bring them in your interviewing process. Thus, you can save a lot of your time, effort and hassles with skill assessments, and make confident hiring decisions even if you don’t have a strong technical recruitment team.
Skype: Skype is a well-known video calling tool that you can use for the first round of interview. Skype can save a lot of your time and enable you to reach candidates overcoming the location barriers.
#5 A Few More Productivity Apps
The most important resource you have in your business is YOU. So don’t take yourself for granted …..
Treat exercise as your most important client. Exercising will keep your mind & body energized and stress free. Here are some tools that can help you track your goals but the best tool yet again is your Self-Determination.
Fitstar Personal Trainer: An elegant fitness app to craft your perfect routine and challenge you when you’ve hit a plateau.
Keeping your focus laser sharp is the most wanted skill in an entrepreneur. To get the best of your time, you must narrow down your focus to the 2 most important things for your business growth. Well if you want a lesson on how to prioritize you can read: 5 secrets to prioritization and Do Less to Do more.
Apart from Focus, Team, Talent, Processes & Personal Fitness, CEO of a small business manages the overall Finance, Sales, Marketing, Business Strategies and Funding. Of course there are some very effective tools available to help you with these the functions as well. I will try to list all these important business functions and their related tools in a separate blog.
I hope this article can get you thinking about growth hacks and moving in the right direction for increased focus and productivity.
Would you add any other tools to this list? Please share your favorites in a comment below.