I have been in the business world for 47 years now and one thing that never changes is managing our workload and setting priorities. Everyone I talk to is trying to keep up with the accelerated pace of business and change. At Office Dynamics, we always seem to be in a flurry of activity throughout the year but certain seasons are busier than others. Plus we always have to be thinking 6 – 12 months out because of being in the training industry. [Read more…]
What do emotional intelligence and travel planning have in common? Plenty. I have been traveling extensively for business (and a little pleasure) for 3 straight months. To be honest, it is wearing on me. Several of my trips involved being gone for 5 days; only to come home for 3 or 4 days and leave again for a week. I have been a business traveler for 27 years.
While the typical person thinks traveling is glamorous, the business traveler has a different perspective. Often business travelers put in very long days. They may not pack until late at night before their departure the next morning. Then they wake up early to get to the airport in plenty of time to wade through security lines. The traveler then sits and waits until boarding time. Sometimes boarding times are delayed—even by hours. Then the traveler gets to sit on an airplane for hours before finally arriving at their destination. [Read more…]
How would you describe your e-mail situation lately?
Are you getting so much that it’s sometimes impossible to manage it properly and still be productive? Do you worry you’ll hit the “send” button too soon, and deliver a message before its ready? Take heart….You’re not alone!
E-mail technology has been great – but it has also wreaked havoc on the way we communicate. For example, you can shoot back a reply to an e-mail in lickety-split time. The question is, should you? Thinking about what the message ought to say often becomes secondary to our ability to communicate immediately. And whenever action precedes thought, trouble will likely follow at some point or another, as you know. [Read more…]
Welcome to May! Such a lovely time of year. I hope everyone has recuperated from an exciting Administrative Professionals Week. We did a lot of celebrating at Office Dynamics. On Wednesday, April 26 I hosted a Facebook Live where I spoke about what I love about the administrative profession and gave tips on how to shine in the profession. In case you missed it, you can access it here.
Well, last week was very exciting for me because once again, I witnessed The Power of One. For more than 2 decades I have been talking to assistants about The Power of One. The concept is that it only takes 1 person to create change or 1 person to create something awesome. I use a visual of candles on a table. I light the first candle. This represents 1 person who has an idea. They take action on their idea and talk to another assistant or someone else in the company. Then another candle is lit representing the spark created from the first person. Then those 2 people go out and talk to others and light the fire in them about their idea. And then those 4 or 6 people go out and light a spark in others and before you know it . . . BAM! Something wonderful occurs that can change the life of many. [Read more…]
This is the second article in a two-part series on productivity apps for admins by Julie Perrine. You can read part 1 here.
As an administrative professional, you need to be productive and organized wherever you go. But hauling around your work laptop 24/7 isn’t exactly practical. The solution? Smartphone apps! Here are my 10 app category favorites.
- Travel Planning Apps: Whether you’re the one traveling, or simply attempting to get your executive from point A to point B, travel planning apps can be a life saver. Tripit, my personal favorite, creates a mobile itinerary available at the tap of your screen. Just forward your confirmation emails to the app (hotel, rental car, airline tickets, etc.), and Tripit will organize them all in one place including directions between locations. I also recommend SeatGuru, GateGuru, and the apps for a hotel, airline, and ground transportation companies you use the most.
- To-Do List Apps: Long on to-dos and short on time? Enter your habits, tasks, and hobbies into a to-do list app such as SuperNote, Wunderlist or Timeful. Timeful will suggest the optimal time to complete them. This smart app even “learns” your schedule and adapts to your busy and available times.
- Project Management Apps: Teamwork is, by far, my favorite project management app. It’s what I use to keep my own team on track. You can update statuses, track time and tasks, and get real-time updates on all your projects. Others you may want to research include Trello, Asana, and Basecamp.
- Virtual Meeting Apps: For far-flung teams or admins supporting on-the-go executives, online meeting apps help keep everyone on the same page. My team uses GoToMeeting, Skype, and Facetime to meet “face-to-face” using technology. Chat by phone or video conferencing, record meetings, and share screens to keep each other up to date, even if you’re continents apart!
- Cloud-Based File Storage: Tired of attaching documents to emails and relying on track changes to keep up with multiple people editing the same files? Need to access your work from any device, anywhere? Dropbox, Box, or OneDrive may be the solution. Update, backup, and share files with your executive and team – no flash drives needed!
- Note Taking Apps: A robust note-taking solution, such as Evernote or OneNote, makes it easy to organize, capture, and share everything from that awesome picture you took of the sunrise to your administrative procedures binder. Work from anywhere on any device and capture everything in one handy digital notebook!
- Currency Converter Apps: Quick, what’s the current exchange rate for the yen? I don’t know, either – but Convert Pad does. It quickly converts any currency, but it goes a step above and beyond by converting measurements, too – inches to centimeters, kilometers to miles, etc. There are a lot of free currency converter apps available, so search for the one that is simplest to use for your specific needs.
- Time Zone Converter Apps: Time zones can be tricky, especially if you or your executive is working virtually from another state or country. I use the Time Zone Converter by TimeAndDate. Another cool one is World Time Buddy. It not only lets you check the time in any part of the world, it also shows you color-coded business hours in your specified time zone, making it easier to schedule meeting times.
- Business Card Scanning Apps: Anyone who’s ever attended a conference or networking event knows just how quickly all those business cards stack up. WorldCard Mobile scans those cards, adds the info as a new contact or updates an existing one. It even allows you to connect to the person straight from their business card!
- iBooks, Kindle, or Other eReader Apps: Want to catch up on the latest industry trends on your lunch break or finally finish that novel on a long flight? Don’t lug your entire library with you. An eReader makes your bookshelf portable and saves space in your briefcase or carry-on bag.
The days of being tied to a desk or a computer are long gone. With these apps, productivity and organization are literally at your fingertips. Take a few minutes to explore the app store for solutions you need, and turn your smartphone into a productivity powerhouse!
What are your favorite productivity and organization apps? Share your favorites in the comments below.
About Julie Perrine
Julie Perrine is an administrative expert, author, and all around procedures pro. She is the founder and CEO of All Things Admin, a company dedicated to developing innovative products, training, and resources for administrative professionals worldwide. Julie’s upbeat, step-by-step approach to handling the opportunities and challenges facing administrative professionals provides proactive strategies for developing a plan, creating forward motion, and achieving great results.
She is the author of two books: The Innovative Admin: Unleash the Power of Innovation In Your Administrative Career and The Organized Admin: Leverage Your Unique Organizing Style to Create Systems, Reduce Overwhelm, and Increase Productivity.
Julie will be one of the featured speakers at the 2017 Conference for Administrative Excellence in Las Vegas this October. She will be presenting a general session on What To Do When There’s Too Much To Do: The Productive Admin’s Guide to Managing Time.
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