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14 Online Tools That Help Your Team Stay Connected, Productive, and Happy

14 Online Tools That Help Your Team Stay Connected, Productive, and Happy

Being able to work remotely, or even build a company that’s remote, is not easy, but it’s possible today. Some of today’s most notable companies, including Basecamp, Buffer, Virgin, and WordPress are building companies with over 100+ employees all around the world. How did they do it?

They found the right ‘tools’When your team members are living on opposite sides of the continent and in different time-zones, effective tools are vital to your team culture, productivity, and success. We’ve tested hundreds of online tools to maximize how we stay connected, productive, and happy.  Here is a list of top 14 online tools that you will find useful for yourself and your team. The first four deal with connectivity while the last four help to make your team happier. The remaining six tolls help to increase your team’s productivity.

1. Slack – Keeping Everyone Connected

Slack is a powerful and free way to coordinate with your team and keep everyone on the same page.

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    2. Help Scout – Customer Support Inbox Managed In One Place

    When we first started, we coordinated all of our customer support through Gmail. That got messy — fast. With Help Scout, we can now invite our support team to the application, and coordinate all of our support tickets in one place. They also have a knowledge base feature that allows you to systematize your customer service.

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      3. Intercom – Live Customer Support

      Intercom is a live chat support tool that allows you to send manual and automated notifications to visitors and customers inside the app based on their behaviors. It helps our customers get direct, immediate support, and helps us keep everyone happy.

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        4. Basecamp – Creating company milestones, goals, and organizing files

        Basecamp has been around for over 17 years. Which is far longer than most team management tools out there. And their product shows it. It’s a great tool to organize everything in your company, or even for yourself to keep everything organized. They have a free plan for one project (also known as Basecamp), and you can input as many users as you want.

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          5. Stunning– Helping Customers Update Billing Information In One Click

          Stunning is a new tool we’ve recently adopted in order to recover lost revenue in our business. A common issue that every business runs into is failed charges. This could be due to fraud, card expiry, or just the customer’s bank rejecting the charge for security reasons.

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            What Stunning allows us to do is help update, remind, and empower customers to update their information with one-click.

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              6. Trello – Coordinating Future Blog Posts, To-Do Lists, And More

              Content marketing has been the biggest driver of our website growth thus far, and it’s growing faster by the month. People often ask how we’re able to brainstorm, organize, and publish so many articles at a time. Before, we were using a Google Spreadsheet, which got pretty chaotic.

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                Now we use Trello to organize everything into various sections: Ideas, To-do’s, To be published, and Published.

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                  7. WordPress – Content Management Platform

                  I have yet to hear a better platform for content management, which is why companies like Wall Street Journal, TechCrunch, and 20% of the internet is powered by WordPress.

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                    8. Pomodoro – Workcycle To Maximize Productivity Without Burnout

                    I would often find myself working for two to three hour periods at a time, without taking a break. When you’re working on something you’re passionate about, it’s easy to put your head down without resting.

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                    The issue was, I was feeling less productive and losing my creativity after about 60-minutes or so. I’ve recently been adopting the Pomodoro Technique, where you work in 25 minute chunks, then take small breaks (~5 minutes). It’s forced me to focus on completing one important task without distraction. Taking small breaks throughout the day prevents your team to from burning out.

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                      9. Invision – Design And Development Collaboration In One Place

                      Invision allows our team to collaborate and share comments on design layouts, feature builds, and even prototype new ideas inside the app. It’s saved us a lot of time and keeps our entire team aligned to one vision of the product.

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                        10. Zapier – Automation Of Recurring Tasks (IFTTT For Business)

                        If you’ve used IFTTT for your personal automation, you’ll love Zapier for your business. It allows us to automate important functions of our business, without needing to develop it on the back-end.

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                          11. Five Minute Journal – Daily Reminders To Express Gratitude and Appreciation

                          The five minute journal was originally recommended by Tim Ferriss, who uses it in his daily routine. It’s easy to be caught up with the current events of your day, and lose appreciation of what you have in your life. The five minute journal gives you the template and framework to record down your thoughts, and what you’re most appreciative for before you start your day, and before you hit the sheets.

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                            12. Calm

                            Meditation And Peace Of Mind On-Demand

                            Whenever we feel stressed out, Calm is a go-to tool to get grounded again. It provides soothing background noises for you to enjoy, including a guided meditation practice that lasts 5 to 10 minutes.

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                              13. Strides – Powerful Habit Tracker With Visual Data Analytics Of Your Habits

                              We are what we do repeatedly. As boring as it sounds, having daily routines is what gives us the freedom to do what we want in our lives. I’ve tried multiple habit tracking online tools, but Strides is one of the best based on visual appearances and usability.

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                                14. 8tracks – Curated Music Selected Based On What Mood You Are In

                                8tracks gives you music collections depending on what mood you are in.

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                                  Featured photo credit: businessfitnessblog.files.wordpress.com via businessfitnessblog.files.wordpress.com

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                                  Sean Kim

                                  Sean is the founder and CEO of Rype, a language learning app. He's an entrepreneur and blogger.

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                                  Last Updated on September 17, 2019

                                  10 Simple Ways To Always Think Positive Thoughts

                                  10 Simple Ways To Always Think Positive Thoughts

                                  Positive thinking can lead to a lot of positive change in your life. Developing an optimistic outlook can be good for both your physical and mental health.

                                  But sometimes, certain situations arise in life that makes it hard to keep a positive outlook. Take steps to make positive thinking become more like your second nature and you’ll reap the biggest benefits.

                                  Here are 10 ways to make thinking positive thoughts easy:

                                  1. Spend Time with Positive People

                                  If you surround yourself with constant complainers, their negativity is likely to rub off on you.

                                  Spend time with positive friends and family members to increase the likelihood that their positive thinking habits will become yours too. It’s hard to be negative when everyone around you is so positive.

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                                  2. Take Responsibility for Your Behavior

                                  When you encounter problems and difficulties in life, don’t play the role of the victim. Acknowledge your role in the situation and take responsibility for your behavior.

                                  Accepting responsibility can help you learn from mistakes and prevent you from blaming others unfairly.

                                  3. Contribute to the Community

                                  One of the best ways to feel good about what you have, is to focus on what you have to give.

                                  Volunteer in some manner and give back to the community. Helping others can give you a new outlook on the world and can assist you with positive thinking.

                                  4. Read Positive and Inspirational Materials

                                  Spend time each day reading something that encourages positive thinking. Read the Bible, spiritual material, or inspirational quotes to help you focus on what’s important to you in life. It can be a great way to start and end your day.

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                                  Some recommendations for you:

                                  5. Recognize and Replace Negative Thoughts

                                  You won’t be successful at positive thinking if you’re still plagued by frequent negative thoughts. Learn to recognize and replace thoughts that are overly negative. Often, thoughts that include words like “always” and “never” signal that they aren’t true.

                                  If you find yourself thinking something such as, “I always mess everything up,” replace it with something more realistic such as, “Sometimes I make mistakes but I learn from them.”

                                  There’s no need to make your thoughts unrealistically positive, but instead, make them more realistic.

                                  6. Establish and Work Toward Goals

                                  It’s easier to be positive about problems and setbacks when you have goals that you’re working toward. Goals will give you motivation to overcome those obstacles when you encounter problems along the way. Without clear goals, it’s harder to make decisions and gauge your progress.

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                                  Learn to set SMART goals to help you achieve more.

                                  7. Consider the Consequences of Negativity

                                  Spend some time thinking about the consequences of negative thinking. Often, it can become a self-fulfilling prophecy.

                                  For example, a person who thinks, “I probably won’t get this job interview,” may put less effort into the interview. As a result, he may decrease his chances of getting the job.

                                  Create a list of all the ways negative thinking impacts your life. It likely influences your behavior, your relationships, and your feelings. Then, create a list of the ways in which positive thinking could be beneficial.

                                  8. Offer Compliments to Others

                                  Look for reasons to compliment others. Be genuine in your praise and compliments, but offer it frequently. This will help you look for the good in other people.

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                                  9. Create a Daily Gratitude List

                                  If you start keeping a daily gratitude list, you’ll start noticing exactly how much you have to be thankful for. This can help you focus on the positive in your life instead of thinking about all the bad things that have happened in the day.

                                  Getting in the habit of showing an attitude of gratitude makes positive thinking more of a habit. Here’re 40 Simple Ways To Practice Gratitude.

                                  10. Practice Self-Care

                                  Take good care of yourself and you’ll be more equipped to think positively.

                                  Get plenty of rest and exercise and practice managing your stress well. Taking care of your physical and mental health will provide you with more energy to focus on positive thinking.

                                  Learn about these 30 Self-Care Habits for a Strong and Healthy Mind, Body and Spirit.

                                  More About Staying Positive

                                  Featured photo credit: DESIGNECOLOGIST via unsplash.com

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