When you’re in the business of being creative, isn’t that how you want to spend your time? Any business owner knows the frustration of being bogged down by paperwork, finances, appointments and the other little things that go into being an entrepreneur. Luckily, the development of technology has allowed us to find solutions to streamline our day-to-day activities in order to get back to our passion – creativity!
Let’s take a look at some of the top programs to help you streamline the tedious tasks and focus your energy on what you love.
There’s nothing worse than needing something and not being able to find it. If you can sympathize with this feeling, then it may be time to invest in a quality file storage system like Dropbox or Transporter. Not only do these programs ensure that you can always find what you’re looking for, but it also allows you to seamlessly share files with clients, team members and everyone else involved in the planning process.
Sometimes emailing back and forth can be inefficient, especially when it’s for quick communications. Fortunately, there are plenty of apps to solve that issue! Slack, WhatsApp and Viber are all popular options for team communications, allowing you to keep in touch from any mobile device while on the go. Photo Circle is another app that I love, which lets you create shared photo albums with your team – perfect for design collaboration!
Nobody likes to deal with their finances, but we can’t always rely on others to handle it so it’s essential to have an easy-to-use program to streamline the process. Square is a popular choice – it’s not just for credit card processing, but can be used for online payments, payroll and other great tools for small businesses. FreshBooks, on the other hand, is useful for the solopreneur who needs a simple, comprehensive place to keep track of everything going in and out. Plus, you can snap photos of receipts and finally clear out that pile you’ve been holding on to.
With all of the moving pieces that come with owning a business, it can be easy to get lost in the little things and lose sight of the bigger picture. Try out a project management tool, like Basecamp, Evernote or Wunderlist, to keep track of your to-dos and make sure everything gets finished in time. If time management is your issue, check out Toggl which helps you keep track of how you spend your time during the day – this is also great for those who bill by hour!
Who says you need to hire a personal assistant to handle all of your routine to-dos? Go virtual and experiment with these apps and more to see what is the best fit for your business – you’ll be grateful for the extra time you get to spend on what really matters – creativity!
Kevin Dennis is the owner of Fantasy Sound Event Services, a full-service event company based in Livermore, California. Dennis is the current chapter president for Silicon Valley NACE, and the immediate past national president for WIPA.