Picture this—one day you wake up and you're a full-time entrepreneur. Whether you stumbled here, got laid off, or fully intentionally chose to be here, you're here AND THERE'S A LOT TO DO! You now GET to wear all the hats including but not limited to client relations, pitching, social media, the actual service you provide, invoicing, and marketing. The objective is to work more efficiently—so you can zero in on the work you do best. In our creative entrepreneur life, there seems to be so much to do, yet we got so little time. Fortunately, there are a bunch of productivity apps or tools that can help us with our daily lives. Here are the top three tools that I use in my business and will help entrepreneurs like you to be focused on your goals, without losing your thoughts. These tools are meant to help you manage your time and prioritize your tasks and get paid on time. If you are an entrepreneur who juggles running a business, having fun, raising a family, or even staying fit and healthy, it can be incredibly challenging to find balance (is balance even possible?!) Do yourself a favor and download these apps and integrate them into your workflow stat. 1. Honeybook
Honeybook—contracts, invoices, questionnaires, scheduling, time tracking, CRM management, proposals—I use this for everything. From the moment an inquiry comes in (which I have hundreds a year, aka a lot of to keep tabs on) they go into the system and I start them through the HB pipeline starting with a questionnaire to learn more about what the client is looking for. (You can even embed a HB contact form directly into your site so that when a potential lead submits, it automatically starts a project for you!) Aside from that, this platform is mobile friendly! So, wherever you are, you can update everything from here. It’s convenient and will save you a lot of time. The system helps to manage your day-to-day or weekly tasks and where you are with each client, so all activities and times are kept track of. The task management and the calendar tools are crucial to help make sure that on your calendar you do not forget anything. Do not miss a customer meeting, date, or a HoneyBook tools invoice! This is like a one stop shop platform for every creative entrepreneur. You can manage your entire inquiry, scheduling, time tracking and on boarding process within HoneyBook. Get a free trial and 50% off your first year here.
Have you heard about a Kanban board? It’s actually one of the features of Trello. This is perfect for any brands and creative entrepreneurs, especially if you're more of a visual learner like me. Trello's method of managing projects and tasks is visual, think digital sticky notes that can move around. It uses cards on a board to indicate projects or tasks. Users are able to set up lists with tasks and cards for specific team members. Trello is like a digital whiteboard with high-tech notes that you can attach easily to appropriate columns. Besides my to do list, my favorite is my "desires board" where I have a column for dream clients, short term and long term business goals, short term and long term personal goals, and most importantly achieved. I use this to plan out my course material for Camp Clarity and organize any of my upcoming business ideas. It's also great to use when collaborating on deliverables with a client by inviting them to a specific project board. I know there are a lot of project management tools out there, but what sets Trello apart aside from it’s features is that, it’s completely free! This app works on your desktop computer, tablet, or smartphone, which will allow you and your team (or clients) to use it just about anywhere and anytime.
We all know GSuite right? *she runs to delete her old yahoo account* Google Calendar is Google's version of the digital calendar and because it's pretty much universal at this point, I highly recommend switching over if you haven't yet. This is a web-based time management and scheduling system that lets you organize not only YOUR time, but also helps you coordinate with other people's schedules. ?? The fact that this browser integrates cloud computing makes it functional across diverse platforms, such as PCs, mobile phones, and tablets. Google syncs your schedule across multiple devices, so you never miss a meeting. You can find access to your schedule on any devices where the internet is available. For me, if it doesn't go on the calendar, it doesn't happen. As soon as I confirm photoshoot time, a coaching call or even a happy hour with a friend, it goes on the calendar and I add the person to the invite. It keeps my brain clear so that I don't have to worry I'm missing something; I can always look at my calendar and know. I even put personal things like "Take a walk" or "morning routine" on the cal. That's something that I teach my coaching clients—your personal life goes on your calendar first so that it actually happens. We must start scheduling our business around our life and not the other way around.) You might have never known that you needed these productivity tools, but once you have access to them, your entrepreneurial life will never be the same. The best part about the productivity tools, is that most of them are free or offered for free trials. As a creative entrepreneur, you should put your money in the right thing – your time and energy.