Productive! Magazine is an interesting read if you are keen on learning more about productivity. This magazine contains articles and heaps of practical tips from various productivity experts.
Rather than describe what Evernote is, I thought I’ll share what I actually love about the product and how it helps me in a practical way.
Every note can be tagged and filed away with useful terms, that not only aid organisation but also searching. I tag note with information such as what a document is about (invoice, receipt, letter, etc), who it is from (supplier name for invoices, doctor’s name for medical receipts), the type of expense if it’s a receipt, the name of the project or client if it is work related, and so on.
The beauty of tags is that it can be anything as long as it makes sense to you and you can use as many tags as is practical.
The most useful functionality as far I’m concerned is the ability to search through all notes inside Evernote. As I understand Evernote indexes all the text it can find/read, making searches a breeze. Premium users can also search through PDF text, be it from a converted document or a scanned document.
Evernote has become my default note taking and editing platform. I write most things in Evernote and if it’s something I want to send out, I email it from Evernote or copy it to another medium. Examples include this blog post which I drafted using Evernote.
The ability to create shortcuts to notebooks, tags, notes or even search criteria means that you don’t have to repeatedly keep looking for the same thing. I only have a few shortcut items but these are things that I refer to atleast once a day, if not more frequent. These include, the current project I’m working on, my “follow up” tag, and my “inbox”.
The fact that Evernote works very well across multiple platforms and devices is a blessing. I no longer need to carry a laptop or even a tablet around as all my notes are accessible via my phone, with all the same capabilities.
It does take a bit of investment in terms of time to tag notes and file them in different notebooks, but that’s just what works for me. You could simply have one notebook, and let everything collect in there without putting any additional effort and still get the same benefits. I just like things being organised.
If you haven’t tried it already, I encourage you to go sign up and start using Evernote straight-away. It’s uses are limitless!
Having spent a bit of time hanging around in hospitals lately, I’ve come to appreciate the pain chart on the left.
This chart tells the doctors and nurses the level of discomfort a patient is in, and they can decide what can be done to ease the pain and whether the treatment strategy needs to be reviewed accordingly.
What if in an office environment, everyone is given a similar pain chart which charts out the level of pain or frustration they feel in simply trying to do their jobs. Pain points in a working environment could be someone being difficult, a lack of resources, or simply being overwhelmed by unreasonable expectations and the like.
The more pain there is, the less productive staff are likely to be as they will be fighting the pain instead of doing the actual work.
What if leaders focus on eliminating these pain points? Wouldn’t it simply pave the way to greater productivity?
Bring on the pain charts to the office environment I say!
A beautiful Spring-like day in Summer.
In case you haven’t heard (very unlikely), Australia won the Ashes on the back of some wonderful and aggressive cricket. I was fortunate to have seen most of it and have enjoyed every moment of the whitewash. We’ve seen some brilliant performances by Mitchell Johnson throughout the series, but it must be remembered that he wouldn’t have even got a look in if the first choice bowlers such as Jimmy Pattinson and Jackson Bird were available. Along with these two players making their comeback in the Big Bash League, the current lineup of Harris, Johnson, and Siddle as well as the backup players such as Starc, Hilfenhaus, Hazelwood, Coulter-Nile, and Bollinger, the Australian fast bowling stocks are looking good for another decade of dominance.
The challenge is to find a few batsman who can stand up and be counted with heaps of runs and mental strength for the rigours of test cricket.
I’m excited about the good times ahead! South Africa, here we come.