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10 Free Apps Every Entrepreneur Should Have

10 Free Apps Every Entrepreneur Should Have

Managing your own company shouldn’t be that hard when you can have apps that can make your life easier. From a time tracking app to a cloud data integration software, these tools will help you run your business smoothly and efficiently without spending a cent. Here’s a list of free apps every entrepreneur should have.

1. TMetric

Whether you have a small business or a big company, this simple time tracking app is your new partner in managing projects and employees. TMetric works as an activity timer, which you can view in timeline mode, to better manage and analyze your everyday activities. For a business owner or team manager, it’s the perfect tool to monitor your employees or team members’ productivity and task status. A team leader can view what websites and applications a project member visited during a task using the desktop version of TMetric. It can easily be integrated with popular project management platforms like Jira, RedMine, Asana, Trello, Basecamp, and more. The user friendliness of this time tracking software is its best feature, aside from the fact that it’s totally free. Adding new tasks or breaks is very straightforward. No fancy, complicated buttons or options, just a clean, organized dashboard of your work timeline. Currently, TMetric doesn’t have a paid premium version so you can enjoy its full features at zero cost.

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    tmetric app 02

      Here’s a screenshot of Tmetric’s integration with Jira software:

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      Jira Integration

        2. Taskworld

        Are you an entrepreneur who has a thing for graphs and charts? Then you will definitely like Taskworld. Visualize your task status in a nice, sleek graph, or critical areas in a project highlighted on a neat bar chart. This is a virtual office for your business where people can create personal chat messages, create multiple workspaces, and add an unlimited number of members. Speaking of unlimited, you’ll also get an unlimited file storage to secure data sharing if you get the Enterprise version. Don’t worry, this is still free for a team of five people — perfect for startup owners working on a budget.

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          3. Boomerang

          Are you dealing with hundreds of emails everyday? There are two different kinds of emails: those that you need to drop everything and reply to hastily, and those that you can say, “Nah, maybe later.”

          Boomerang is a little plugin which basically allows you to remove non time-sensitive emails from your inbox until a specific date you set when they will be “boomeranged” back to your inbox. That explains the name. Boomerang can be synced with Gmail, Google Apps for Work, and Microsoft Outlook. It has real-time calendar, email scheduling, follow-up reminders, and inbox pause. Boomerang Basic is free and includes 10 message credits per month, reminders, response tracking, and clicks tracking.

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            4. Tasytt

            Hiring — just hearing this word is already exhausting. Aside from the tedious recruitment and interview process, you have to deal with paperworks and training. That’s where Tasytt enters the picture. It makes team member onboarding streamlined so you have more time managing your business. This app appeals to millennials and, in an age where everything is digital, Tasytt fits in nicely. It’s mobile, so you can fill out forms or access training materials on-the-go. They are launching a “freemium” version so register now.

            tasytt app

              5. ArmorText

              If you’re looking for complete control and privacy of your messages, be it on mobile or desktop, ArmorText is the perfect solution for that. It secures your data like an armor (thus the name) so you alone, or only your team if you’re using group messaging, can access it. The app features an integrated media library and encrypted file storage. It boasts zero provider access, meaning ArmorText never holds keys to decrypt, mine, or turn over your data. This app runs on various platforms so you can switch from your iOS phone to your desktop computer seamlessly.

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                6. EasilyDo

                Wouldn’t it be nice if you could manage everything with just a tap on your phone? Manage every email, shipment, meeting, even travelling with a tiny but powerful app called EasilyDo. It’s your personalized virtual assistant right from your pocket. The free version gives you access to more than 40 features and up to five new contacts every month. If you want a simple, fast, and organized email experience, then EasilyDo is for you.

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                  7. UpKeep

                  Asset management was a pain before UpKeep was introduced. It’s a tool that allows business owners to quickly and efficiently handle work order and task management for technicians who are in the field. OnKeep creates a seamless and smooth transaction between managers and technicians. They are mobile-first app so you can deal with your assets on the go. Who said enterprise software should be complicated? They offer unlimited requesters, vendor users, and work orders on their free version. They also have a built-in messaging and chat system, barcode scanners, and more!

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                    8. VARIDESK Standing Timer

                    Interested in staying active while managing your business? Burn calories while working. Yes, you read that right. The VARIDESK Standing Timer works like a charm in notifying you when it’s time to switch from a sitting to a standing position. Just set the number of minutes you would like to sit and stand and let the app handle the rest. You can monitor your progress each day using its sleek main user interface. To measure how many calories you burned, simply enter your weight and it will calculate how many calories you burned while standing.

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                    varidesk app

                      9. Stringify

                      If you know IFTTT, imagine that on steroids and you’ll have Stringify. As a business owner, you want everything in sync with you. Everything should keep up with you and not the other way around. Stringify redefines “internet of things.”

                      Here’s an example of automation from their site, “When I park my car in the city…Then Yelp me three great restaurants, tweet my location, and send me a notification of where I parked.” This easy drag and drop app can open the lights and play your jam as you walk inside your home. Imagine what else it can do.

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                        10. Skyvia

                        Data integration is inevitable in any company that uses computers. Skyvia Data Integration doesn’t need coding, special training, and it all happens in a cloud. Skyvia can be useful for easy data migration from one premise to cloud apps. It can keep your cloud apps (Salesforce, Quickbooks, Mailchmp, etc.) in sync for business process automation. You can easily import data to cloud applications and databases, then export it into a CSV file anytime, anywhere! If needed, you can make a copy of your cloud data and store it in relational databases for future analysis and reporting. All of these features are completely free for now.

                        skyvia app

                          Featured photo credit: Ed Gregory via stokpic.com

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                          Last Updated on December 3, 2019

                          7 Powerful Steps to Achieve Career Success

                          7 Powerful Steps to Achieve Career Success

                          I often hear people say, “I want to be successful but don’t know where to start” or “I’ve achieved career success yet I’m not happy.” And then I ask, “what does career success mean to you?” And many have a hard time articulating their response with much conviction.

                          It’s common that people lack clarity, focus, and direction. And when you layer on thoughts and actions that are misaligned with your values, this only adds to your misdirected quest to achieve your career success.

                          A word of caution. It’s going to take some time for you to think about and work on your own path for career success. You need to set aside time and be intentional about the steps you take to achieve career success. In my opinion, this step-by-step guide is apart of your life philosophy.

                          1. Define Career Success for Yourself

                          Pause. Give yourself time and space for self-reflection.

                          What does career success mean to you?

                          This is about defining your career success:

                          • Not what you think you ‘should’ do
                          • Not what people may think of you
                          • Not adjusting to friends and family’s judgements
                          • Not taking actions based on societal or community norms

                          “A flower does not think of competing to the flower next to it. It just blooms” – Zen Shin

                          When you strip away all your external influences and manage your inner critic, what are you left with? You need to define career success that best suits your life situation.

                          There’s no fixed answer. Everyone is different. Your answer will evolve and be impacted by life events. Here are a few examples of career success:

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                          • Work-life balance
                          • Opportunities for growth and advancement
                          • Feeling valued that my contributions had an impact

                          Now even as you reflect on the examples above, the descriptions are not specific enough. You’ve got to take it deeper:

                          • What do you mean by work-life balance?
                          • What do you consider to be opportunities for growth and advancement?
                          • How do you like to be recognized for your work? How do you know if your contributions have had an impact?

                          Let’s take a look at some potential responses to the questions above:

                          • I want more time with my family, and less stress at work
                          • I want increased responsibilities, to manage a team, a higher income, and the prestige of working at a certain level in the company
                          • I’d like my immediate leader to send me a thank-you note or take me out for coffee to genuinely express her or his gratitude. I’ll know I’ve made an impact if I get feedback from my coworkers, leaders and other stakeholders.

                          Further questions to reflect on to help narrow the focus for the above responses:

                          • What are some opportunities that can help you get traction on getting more time with your family? And decrease your stress at work?
                          • What’s most important for you in the next 12 months?
                          • What’s the significance of receiving others’ feedback?

                          Now, I’m only scratching the surface with these examples. It takes time to do the inner work and build a solid foundation.

                          Start this exercise by first asking what career success means to you and then ask yourself meaningful questions to help you dig deeper.

                          What types of themes emerge from your responses? What keywords or phrases keep coming up for you?

                          2. Know Your Values

                          Values are the principles and beliefs that guide your decisions, behaviors and actions. When you’re not aligned with your values and act in a way that conflicts with your beliefs, it’ll feel like life is a struggle.

                          There are simple value exercises that can help you quickly determine your core values. This one designed by Carnegie Mellon University can help you discover your top 5 values.[1]

                          Once you have your top 5 values keep them visible. Your brain needs reminders that these are your top values. Here are some ways to make them stick:

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                          • Write them on cue cards or notes and post it in your office
                          • Take a picture of your values and use it as a screensaver on your phone
                          • Put the words on your fridge
                          • Add the words on your vision board

                          Where will your value words be placed in your physical environment so that you have a constant reminder of them?

                          3. Define Your Short-Term and Long-Term Goals

                          When writing your short-term and long term life goals, use the SMART framework – Specific Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-bound. Treat this as a brainstorming exercise. Your potential and possibilities are limitless.

                          How you define short-term and long-term is entirely up to you. Short-term can be 30 days, 90 days, or 6 months. Maybe long-term goals are 4 months, 1 year, or 10 years.

                          Here are a few self-reflection questions to help you write your goals:[2]

                          • What would you want to do today if you had the power to make it the way you want?
                          • If no hurdles are in the way, what would you like to achieve?
                          • If you have the freedom to do whatever you want, what would it be?
                          • What type of impact do you want to have on people?
                          • Who are the people you most admire? What is it about them or what they have that you’d want for your life or career?
                          • What activities energize you? What’s one activity you most love?

                          Remember to revisit your core values as you refine yours goals:

                          • Are your goals in or out of alignment with your core values?
                          • What adjustments do you need to make to your goals? Maybe some of your goals can be deleted because they no longer align with your values.
                          • How attainable are your goals? Breakdown your goals into digestible pieces.
                          • Do your short-term goals move you towards attaining your long-term goals?

                          Get very clear and specific about your goals. Think about an archer – a person who shoots with a bow and arrows at a target. This person is laser focused on the target – the center of the bullseye. The target is your goal.

                          By focusing on one goal at a time and having that goal visible, you can behave and act in ways that will move you closer to your goal.

                          4. Determine Your Top Talents

                          What did you love doing as a kid? What made these moments fun? What did you have a knack for? What did you most cherish about these times? What are the common themes?

                          What work feels effortless? What work do you do that doesn’t seem like work? Think about work you can lose track of time doing and you don’t even feel tired of it.[3]

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                          What are your desires? Try it out. Experiment. Take action and start. How can you incorporate more of this type of work into your daily life?

                          What themes emerge from your responses? How do your responses compare to your responses from the values exercise and your goals?

                          What do you notice?

                          5. Identify ‘Feeling’ Words You Want to Experience

                          Do you have tendencies to use your head or heart to make decisions?

                          I have a very strong tendency to make rational, practical, and fact-based decisions using my head. It’s very rare for me to make decisions using my emotions. I was forced to learn how to make more intuitive decisions by listening to my gut when I was struggling with pivotal life decisions. I was forced to feel and listen to my inner voice to make decisions that feel most natural to me. This was very unfamiliar to me, however, it expanded my identity.

                          Review this list of Feeling Words. Use the same technique you use for the values exercise to narrow down how you want to feel.

                          Keep these words visible too!

                          Review your responses. What do you observe? What insights do you gain from these responses and those in the above steps?

                          6. Be Willing to Sit with Discomfort

                          Make career decisions aligned with your values, goals, talents and feelings. This is not for the faint hearted. It takes real work, courage and willingness to cut out the noise around you. You’ll need to sit with discomfort for a bit until you build up your muscle to hit the targets you want.

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                          Surround yourself with a supportive network to help you through these times.

                          “These pains you feel are messengers. Listen to them” – Rumi

                          7. Manage Your Own Career

                          Not to be cynical, but no one can make you happy but yourself. If you don’t take control of your career and manage it like your own business – no one will.

                          Discern between things that you can control and what you can’t control. For example, you may not be able to control who gets a promotion. However, you can control how you react to it and what you’ve learned about yourself in that situation.

                          Summing Up

                          For many who have gone through a career change or been impacted by life events, these steps may seem very basic. However, it’s sometimes the basics that we forget to do. The simple things and moments can edge us closer to our larger vision for ourselves.

                          Staying present and appreciating what you have today can sometimes help you achieve your long-term goals. For example, if you’re always talking about not having enough time and wanting work-life balance, think about what was good in your work day? Maybe you took a walk outside with your co-workers. This could be a small step to help you reframe how you can attain work-life balance.

                          Remember to take time for yourself. Hit pause, notice, observe and reflect to achieve career success by getting deliberate and intentional:

                          1. Define Career Success for Yourself
                          2. Know Your Values
                          3. Define Your Short-Term and Long-Term Life and Goals
                          4. Determine Your Top Talents
                          5. Identify ‘Feeling’ Words You Want to Experience
                          6. Be Willing to sit with Discomfort
                          7. Manage Your Own Career

                          “When you stop chasing the wrong things you give the right things a chance to catch you.” – Lolly Daskal

                          Good luck and best wishes always!

                          More Tips on Advancing Your Career

                          Featured photo credit: rawpixel via unsplash.com

                          Reference

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