I use many productivity apps and tools to ensure that I get my work done in as little time as possible – I love short cuts.  I have mind map apps, diary apps, self control and drop box, but I have chosen the top five tools that I have come to rely on collectively, to help me spend less time on research and more time on producing results.

Evernote

This is a very popular app, cloud based and has been my number one productivity tool for a couple of years.  You can grab pages, photos from anywhere on the web.  The embedded tools like skitch also allow you to capture, then annotate, crop and edit photos, documents and even webpages.  I use it to pull and save information from literally any type of page on the web, it allows you to store the information in folders as well, so even when I am on the move I can still store things to relevant folders and I can even snap pictures in Evernote on my phone and store them too.

It is great at effectively and quickly searching for your stored content as well.  It is cloud based so can sync across a number of devices as long as you have internet access, it currently has over 100 million users who swear by it.  Its success is so great and its uses so varied that there are numerous books written on how to use Evernote, there is even an Evernote for dummies!  If you want to find out what all the fuss is about..Download the app here.

Mailchimp

If you have ever received a newsletter from me then it comes from my engine room which is Mailchimp.  I organise my database and send out my MOJO tips using this online marketing tool. For businesses with a mailing list of less than 2,000 subscribers it is a no brainer as it is free.  Got over 2,000 subscribers? Then it becomes payable.  It has basic newsletter designs, allows the addition of photos, links and you can upload or download contacts on to or from a spreadsheet.

Two of the great features for me is that I can schedule my newsletters to go out at a time that suits me I also use it as an auto responder so when you go to my website and download my One Page Business Map, it takes care of it and ensures you get a copy in your verified email address IMMEDIATELY.  Whats not to like about that?

Audible (listening books)

This is a cheap short cut to getting business savvy without getting an MBA.  Sign up to audible for less than £8 a month and get to listen to the most successful business leaders and thinkers of our generation talk about how they built their fortunes and etched their names into the history books.  Listen to what they did right and where they made mistakes, while you are commuting to work or doing other chores.  Be inspired by their stories and even if you listen for just an hour everyday it will transform your knowledge considerably.  I am currently listening to the insightful ‘The Chimp Paradox’ by Steve Peters.  That adage “leaders are readers” is so true!

Scrivener

This application is a god-send. Its great for writers and allows you to organise your work in a single folder where you can see everything in one go.  It has many advantages over the rigid word processing software, which are quite inflexible if you are writing a book. You can organise and re-organise chapters, separate different parts of a book and even have cork boards which are like index cards. You can see your whole manuscript as one giant script or in sections – You choose.  I am using it to write this 30 day challenge and it helps immensely as I am able to pull information from different sources and add them to the research folder ready to use.  It also allows me to type with no distractions, in full screen mode.  It is available here for less than £30.

Jumpcut

This is a simple tool that allows you to cut and paste over and over again.  Allowing you to cut and copy even after you have copied something else, because it stores all your previous ‘cuts’ and allows you to paste anyone of them by giving you access to up to 80 items in your clipboard history.  That definitely saves a lot of time! Try Jumpcut.

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Remember the best productivity tools are the ones that work for YOU.