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8 Tools for Building an Effective Team

8 Tools for Building an Effective Team

When it comes to getting projects completed, you need to have a great team working on them. Before you can work on projects, you need to put that team together.

There is a lot more to building an effective team than just getting a bunch of employees together to work on a project. You need to use the right tools that are going to help the team to be as productive and effective as possible.

Here are some of the tools that you should be using.

1. Work(etc)

work-etc

    Here is an all-in-one project management, CRM, and collaboration tool that is a must-have for effective teams. It is basically a software solution for your whole business, and then some.

    You can use the cloud-based mobile and web apps to manage your business from anywhere, so you don’t have to be tied to a desk in the office. This is going to mean a huge increase in productivity and efficiency, with the best practices in place.

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    2. Campfire

    campfire

      This is another messaging tool, but it is specifically for group usage. You can use it to share files, text, and code in real time, and of course, save transcripts so you don’t forget anything.

      This is a web-based group chat tool that lets users set up chatrooms that are password protected, in just a few seconds. There is nothing to install, and it is easy to use from any device.

      3. Six Disciplines

      six-disciplines

        Employees can use this tool to track and update the progress of everything they are doing, including plans, goals, and performance results.

        Performance management solutions by Six Disciplines can be used at any time, and from any device, and it makes setting up multi-rater feedback for employees easy for managers to do. With this tool, team management and coaching is team and employee oriented.

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        4. Bitrix24

        bitrix24

          Here is a free collaboration suite with more than 35 awesome tools. It is an all-in-one suite for collaboration, communication, and management tools, and in addition to the free plan, you can also upgrade to paid plans for even more benefits.

          You can even use the self-hosted version to run your server, and you have total control over data and source code access. There is even a help desk, as well as e-learning.

          5. Zoom

          zoom

            This is the number one video conferencing and web conferencing service, and you can sign up for free. It can be used on all devices, so you can use it while you are on the go and no one will ever miss an important meeting again.

            More than 350,000 companies all over the world use this tool. In addition to the free basic service, you can also choose from a variety of paid plans that offer even more great benefits, and none cost more than $20 per month.

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            6. Slack

            slack

              This is a messaging app that teams need in order to be able to stay in contact with each other whenever they need to be.

              You have various options for communicating, including open channels for team conversations, private channels for smaller or one-on-one conversations, and direct messages that let you reach colleagues directly.

              7. Redbooth

              redbooth

                Busy teams should be using this tool for tasks and project management. You can manage all projects, as well as day-to-day work, with all of your chat, email, and file storage apps in one convenient location.

                The software is easy to use and offers an intuitive, user-friendly design that even inexperienced users can enjoy.

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                8. Zoomshift

                zshift

                  Make scheduling easy with this tool that will make your life a whole lot easier. You never have to worry about schedule changes again, because you will always have instant access to it on any device.

                  You can see all employee schedules, make changes, and use the Time Clock app. There are shift reminders, notification settings, mobile notifications, and many other features that make this an indispensable tool for any business.

                  Featured photo credit: Nick Karvounis via unsplash.com

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                  Jane Hurst

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                  Last Updated on November 5, 2019

                  How to Use Visual Learning to Work More Effectively

                  How to Use Visual Learning to Work More Effectively

                  Knowledge is essential to become successful in life, your career and your business. Without learning new concepts and becoming proficient in our craft, we cannot excel in our chosen careers or archive knowledge to pass down to the next generation.

                  But content comes in various forms, and because how we learn influences how much we know, we need to talk about learning styles. This article will focus on how to utilize visual learning to boost your career or business.

                  The Importance of Knowing Your Learning Style

                  Knowing your learning style enables you to process new information to the best of your ability. Not only does it reduce your learning curve, you’re able to communicate these same concepts to others effectively.

                  But it all starts when you’re able to first identify the best way you learn.

                  As a college student, I soon figured out that taking online courses without visual aids or having an instructor in front of me led to poor retention of concepts.

                  Sure, I got good grades and performed excellently in my online exams. However. I discovered that I couldn’t maintain this performance level because I forgot 80 percent of the course content by the end of the semester.

                  There are several types of learning styles known to mankind. To give an idea of how visual learning stacks up against other learning styles, here’s a brief mention of some of the different types of learning styles we have.

                  The four most popular types of learning styles are:

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                  • Visual learning style (what this article talks about).
                  • Aural or auditory learning style (learning by listening to information presented).
                  • Verbal or linguistic learning style (learning that involves speech and writing).
                  • Tactile learning style (learning by touching and doing)

                  But for the purposes of this article, we will be focusing on using visual learning to boost your career or business.

                  How to Know If You’re a Visual Learner?

                  When it comes to boosting your career, business (or education), a visual learner is one who would most definitely choose shapes, images, symbols, or reading over auditory messages.

                  I’m talking about preferring to read an actual map when navigating to a new place over listening to verbal directions. I’m talking about discovering that you actually have trouble remembering what your manager said at the meeting because there were no graphs or illustrations to support the points raised.

                  Most people who struggle with learning probably aren’t leveraging their best learning styles. The earlier you identify how your learning style can boost your success, the less struggle you will encounter with processing new information throughout your career.

                  However, visual learning in particular CAN 10x your career or business whether it is your preferred learning style or not. And here’s why:

                  Several studies have arrived at the conclusion that the brain retains more information with the help of visual aids. In other words, images are directly processed by our long-term memory which helps us store information for longer periods of time.[1]

                  While some lessons can be performed orally, several concepts can only make sense if you have an image with an explanation of sequences (i.e learning about the human DNA).

                  Visual learning does use a different part of the brain and visual cues are processed by the part of the brain known as the occipital lobe.

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                  By engaging more parts of the brain during learning, you’re able to have a fuller understanding of concepts and facilitate better interaction with your immediate environment.

                  How to Use Visual Learning for Success

                  Here’re 4 ways to use visual learning to boost your career or business:

                  1. Bring back the to-do list. Then add shapes and colors to boost productivity.

                  We live in an age where computers have taken over virtually every aspect of productivity and most human functions. But written lists are making a comeback, and with an endless number of important tasks to complete, having a to-do list of tasks in order of importance can improve your productivity.

                  While coming up with a list is initially challenging, adding colors and shapes to written lists that you personally write and manage gives you an extra layer of assurance and boosts aids recall so that you actually get stuff done.

                  I have tried this technique in my work as a registered nurse and discovered that adding shapes and colors to to-do lists helps me delegate tasks, recognize where more work is needed, and makes it easy to cross off completed tasks at the end of the day.

                  2. Add graphs, charts and symbols to your reports.

                  Yes, it seems like more work cut out for you. However, graphs enable you monitor the heartbeat of your business.

                  Graphs and charts help you trend your finances, budget, and pretty much any data overtime. With the help of free and premium software available on the market, it has become easier to take plain data and in a matter of seconds, have relevant information displayed in different shapes and images.

                  As an entrepreneur, you can make predictions and allocate funds wisely when you’re able to see whether your efforts are rewarded. You can use colors and charts to delegate actions to members of your team and track performance at the same time.

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                  And when broken down into monthly, quarterly, bi-annual or annual goals, graphs and charts communicate what ordinary text cannot.

                  3. Effectively brainstorm with mind-mapping.

                  Mind-mapping is not new but I don’t think it’s been talked about as often as we do to-do lists.

                  With mind mapping, you’re organizing information accurately and drawing relationships between concepts and pieces from a whole.

                  Think of a mind map as a tree with several branches. For example, the tree can symbolize healthcare while each branch stands for nursing, medicine, laboratory science, and so on. When you look at nursing, you can further branch out into types of nursing; pediatric, women’s health, critical care, and so on.

                  It’s an interesting relationship; the more ideas you’re able to come up with for your chosen subject, the deeper you get and the stronger the association.

                  Mind maps really show you relationships between subjects and topics, and simplifies processes that might seem complicated at first glance. In a way, it is like a graphical representation of facts presented in a simple, visual format.

                  Mind mapping isn’t only limited to career professionals; business owners can benefit from mind mapping by organizing their online learning activities and breaking down complex tasks into simple actions so that you can accurately measure productivity.

                  4. Add video streaming to meetings.

                  What if you could double the productivity of your team members by video streaming your meetings or adding flash animation to your presentation at the same time?

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                  When you offer video as an alternative method of processing information to colleagues, there is a greater chance of retaining information because we recreate these stories into images in our minds.

                  For organizations that hold virtual meetings, it can also be an effective way to enhance performance during if people can see their colleagues in addition to flash animation or whatever form of video is provided during the meeting.

                  Is Visual Learning Better Than Other Learning Styles?

                  No, that is not the point. The goal here is to supplement your existing dominant learning style with visual learning so that you can experience a significant boost in how you process and use everyday information.

                  You might discover that understanding scientific concepts are much easier after incorporating visual learning or that you’re able to understand your organization’s value when projected on a visual screen with charts and graphs.

                  The overall goal is to always be learning and to continue to leverage visual learning style in your career and business.

                  More About Learning Styles

                  Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

                  Reference

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