Give Your Customers a Break (and Better Data Reception)

Give Your Customers a Break (and Better Data Reception)

    Have you ever been stuck as a customer in a large structure that functions like a black hole for cellular and broadband wifi?


    If you have, you know the fury-inducing helplessness that accompanies being cut off from instantaneous access to whatever data you want.  If you own or manage any business that has a captive audience for more than a few minutes, this article is directed at you in hopes of aiding in the reduction of your clients’ stress and the enhancement of your customer service reputation.

    I’ve written several articles previously on the fact that an inability to access data all of the time is good – and how to manage it – but the truth of the matter is if you haven’t planned for it, or you’re frequently caught in one of these places, it’s likely to be far less serenity-enhancing and far more stress-inducing.  The effect of this inability to access data actually reduces your productivity instead of enhancing it if you had planned to work through your GTD @Phone or @Internet contexts. In fact, if you find it particularly troublesome, you may find this piece on “iDisorders” of interest.


    If you’re one of the folks who owns or manages a business, such as a restaurant, grocery store, car repair shop, department store, office building, or hospital whose building functions like a cellular black hole, and you aren’t providing free wifi, you’re making your clients’ lives more stressful.  I’m likely to stop being your client over this, whereas some others might tolerate it long enough to boost their blood pressure to dangerous levels.  It’s like the old adage about boiling a frog (although I would never advocate such a thing); if you throw it in hot water, it jumps out.  If you slowly raise the temperature, the frog sits comfortably until it overheats dangerously.

    It’s 2012. If you can afford to operate a business that caters to customers who are required to wait, you can afford to save them from a dark hellhole of no broadband cellular signal.  You can do this by providing free wifi so they can access data services.


    Solving this problem, and making your clients happier (or at least less stressed), is easy. Two effective solutions are:

    • Install a wifi access point and make it free for clients. Invest in a lot of bandwidth…more than you think you need. At least as much as your geeky neighbor kid says you need. Ask him or her. You’ll probably get a good answer.  If you find you bought more wifi than your customers are using, yet you still have a waiting area full of customers, try streaming some movies or the news to a tv connected to the router.
    • Install microcell repeaters. Pricey, but worth it in client satisfaction if you have a captive clientele.  Sure, the ability to access free broadband wifi will satisfy a great many people – clients and employees on break – but the ability to make calls inside a building that otherwise blocks them due to weak signal is a huge boon to everyone who has a phone.

    (Photo credit: Wifi Road Sign via Shutterstock)


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    Last Updated on September 25, 2019

    7 Best Project Management Apps to Boost Productivity

    7 Best Project Management Apps to Boost Productivity

    Project management doesn’t need to be a complicated thing, not if you have apps that make things a whole lot simpler. When you have project management apps, you can take care of your team, tasks and deadlines, without even being in the office. You don’t even have to spend a lot of money to get most of the apps you might need.

    Here are the 7 best project management apps to super boost your team’s productivity:

    1. Basecamp

      It’s probably the most well-known project management app out there. It allows you to organize projects that act as a central location for everything and contains such things as to-do lists, notes, events, files, and much more.

      It is user-friendly, and has a free 30-day trial period. After that, the plan is $99 per month.

      Find out more about Basecamp here.


      2. Asana

        If you are looking for something that is not difficult to use, check out Asana. This is a great task management app that can be used for managing projects as well.

        In a nutshell, Asana helps you create and share task lists with your team. The app is simple but smart enough and has got a lot of integrations. Teams with up to 15 members can use Asana for free. Teams with 15 members and up can choose plans that range from $10.99 per month.

        Find out more about Asana here.

        3. Casual

          This is a unique app that offers a different way of doing things. On Casual, you plan your tasks just by drawing them as a flowchart. The neat thing is that Casual helps you visualize and track dependencies between tasks.


          This app is incredibly intuitive and works great for personal projects, as well as for organizing projects for small teams. You can try it for free, and if you don’t like it, there is no obligation to pay for anything.

          Find out more about Casual here.

          4. Trello

            This app is incredibly user-friendly, and is based on Kanban boards. It actually works like a virtual whiteboard with post-it-notes.

            Trello is great for organizing your to-do lists, ideas, and is very easy to use. You can create several boards to use for various projects, and it’s free of cost. Trello is available to iOS and Android users as well.

            Find out more about Trello here.


            5. OmniPlan

              This is an awesome app for iPhone and iPad users. If you love Gantt charts, this is definitely an app that you can get a lot out of.

              You start out by creating a simple project outline. Then you can use the app to help you through every step of the project until its completion.

              A standard plan for iOS costs just $99.99, and the pro plan is only $199.99.

              Find out more about OmniPlan here.

              6. Podio


                This is a great app for medium and large-sized teams working on projects. The special point about Podio is that there are additional features such as CRM and social intranet.

                There are four different packages: Free, which is free for up to five employees and five external users; Basic, which is $9 per month per employee; Plus, which is $14 per month per employee, and Premium, which is $24 per month per employee.

                Find out more about Podio here.

                7. Microsoft Project

                  This is one of the most commonly-used project management apps. However, it is also one of the most difficult apps to use. It does have a lot of features that are popular with project managers, which is why we have chosen to include in on this list. You can customize reports, track burn rates, and stay on track until projects are complete.

                  The basic plan starts with $7 per month, which allows you project team members to collaborate in the cloud, via web browser or mobile.

                  Find out more about Microsoft Project here.

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                  Featured photo credit: Annie Spratt via

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