Delegate, Focus, and GROW Your Business

7 Business Tools for 7 Days a Week

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Being a Virtual Assistant has introduced me to a great number of programs and applications I never even knew existed.  And let me tell you, I totally wonder how I managed to function before being introduced to by team members or discovering  some of them!  I don’t normally consider myself an “uber-geek” but sometimes I come across something that just makes that part of me dance with glee.

Today I’m going to share a week’s worth of some of my favorite and most used business tools.  Yep, a different one to check out each day, for a solid seven days.  Isn’t life grand?

1. Basecamp: I’ve never been what you would call “organized.” But since I’ve been using Basecamp, it’s easy to work on several projects at once and keep everything organized – even for someone who’s as “organizationally challenged” as I am.  With Basecamp each project has everything you need right there in one location including contacts for everyone involved, file and image storage, message boards and a calendar to keep track of important deadlines.  Corroboration is a breeze and everyone stays in the loop as projects progress.  Along with co-workers or team members that may be working on projects, you can also give your clients access to see how things are coming along.  It also has privacy features to keep “Company stuff” confidential.

2. Gmail: This is the superstore of mail servers.  Now that Gmail has multiple addresses as a feature, I don’t have to have multiple browsers open to manage several client gmail accounts.  Don’t even get me started on the Apps….. You could spend seven days just wandering around all their “extra” features.

3. Dropbox: Get your files wherever you are.  Whenever you upload a file to Dropbox, it syncs with your phone, computers and the Dropbox website.  Gone are the days of emailing files, images, documents and videos to yourself (or others) in order to have access and share.  Dropbox also has a pretty cool feature where each item has its own link, so you can just send the link via email and share that way.

 4. Skype: Did someone say free long distance?  Basically that’s what you get when you call one Skype number from another Skype number anywhere in the world.  Or you can do a pay as you go plan and use your Skype to call land lines and mobiles too.  There’s chat, video chat, screen share and you can even have a group call with multiple attendees.

5. Join Me: Join Me comes in handy when doing a conference call on Skype since the screen share feature is disabled when doing conference calls.  It’s a free download and you save it to your desktop and when you want to share your screen or view someone elses, just open it up and get a number to share your screen or type in the number someone shared with you to allow you to view their screen. It’s a beautiful thing.

6. PDF Converter: This FREE converter from Smart Soft has gotten the job done for me many times.  Whether it’s PDF to word or PDF to Excel, I’ve avoided a lot of headaches using this program.  You can even “test” it online without downloading anything.

 7. Facebook: I know, you’re thinking it’s day seven of the 7 days of Business Tools and I must be completely out of my mind to think that Facebook would qualify as a Business Tool.  Well guess what, not only is it a business tool, it’s one of the most POWERFUL business tools being used. With an audience of over 900 MILLION Facebook users, not using Facebook to promote your business is like setting up at the biggest business expo in the world and selling cupcakes instead of promoting your business (unless cupcakes are your business, then it’s a pretty good idea.)

photo credit: chuckoutrearseats

Posted on June 11th, 2012 by Laura Dennis, Virtual Assistant

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