So what makes a tool an incredible productivity machine, to me that’s simple:
- It must run on multiple platforms: web, mobile, tablet, desktop, laptop, home, work, you get the idea.
- It must backup its data into the cloud and sync across all those devices mentioned above.
- It also must work when off-line.
For me there aren’t too many productivity tools that fall into this category. The ones that I currently do use regularly include:
- Google Calendar
- Google Keep
Evernote is one of those ultra simple tools, much like Twitter is a super simple social network. It allows you to write notes, mark those notes with tags and organize those said notes in notebooks and those notebooks into stacks and then you can set-up alarms to remind you to do stuff. The power in Evernote isn’t what it does, but how you use it.
How often do you need to share files between co-workers and have no clue how to go about it. The usual solution is to send it via email, but then run into issues like the file is too large or the virus scanner rejects it for whatever reason. Or when someone new needs the file you need to dig through your emails to resend it. But if you use Outlook like 99% of the corporate world, it chews up your storage, so you delete those sent emails.
The simple solution to this is to create a note, write your instructions and attach the files right into Evernote. What’s great about this is because Evernote’s culture is to organize, it’s easy to find your document later when you need it. But what’s even better is that you can email the note directly from Evernote to any recipient which sends the note as is, WYSIWYG-style with the files attached. Or you can Copy Share URL and distribute that link via email, IM, SMS and the document becomes viewable in a browser where the user can download the file.
Whenever you start a new project with a client there is always ramp-up documentation that needs to be done. If you’re in software development there’s software you need to install, environments you need to set-up and get access to, network configurations that need to be made and all that for each individual developer.
Usually this information comes in bits and pieces via phone conversations, emails, maybe even faxes, or an already printed document that needs to be scanned. And often no one collects this information. But if you use Evernote and are an organization Nazi you can collect all this information and instructions and document it. When someone new is added to the team you can share the document, I find that sharing the URL is best that way the document can be regularly updated and you don’t need to resend the document.
Your resume should be a living document that is updated every few months. This is especially important if you want to keep yourself on the market even if you aren’t actively looking. On my resume I have a URL that points to an Evernote note with my latest resume. This may seem redundant, but often recruiters want that initial resume which I usually provide in PDF format which will contain that link, so this provides a way for them to get my latest resume themselves.
Evernote is indeed a powerful tool, I use it to write my blogs, track some famous quotes that I find in articles, to writing short stories, etc. If there is one tool anyone should use it’s this one, it is the best invention since Word.