There is no shortage of mobile productivity apps in the world. In fact, top-rated apps are a dime a dozen in the Droid or Apple marketplace. You can’t try them all. Most of you are looking for suggestions on what has worked for others. Perhaps you even stumbled on this because you were searching for “the best productivity apps,” which yielded more articles than you care to read. So, what makes Smartsheet an expert on the topic of work productivity? Well, we like to think of ourselves as a hub for productivity masters — from individuals all the way to global enterprise leaders. That means we have to practice what we preach at home, work, and everywhere in between.
Every member of your team spends too much time on email. A recent study from AtTask discovered that the average American spends 55 percent of their workday on tasks outside of their job role, including email, meetings, administrative tasks, and interruptions. The same study revealed that 14 percent of most work days is spent using email — nearly a seventh of all time spent in the office. For the quarter of us who receive more than 100 emails a day, that figure is higher. Of course, much of that communication and collaboration is necessary for completing work, but if the majority of a work day is not being devoted to primary job duties, something needs to change.
Workstyle diversity begets collaboration. Without it, your team might as well be a set of clones. While you might occasionally wish everyone on your team shared your thought process, you know that ultimately it’s the differences between us that foster the bold, new ideas and the solid strategic skills needed to drive the enterprise forward. The truth is, the “shared brain” workforce project managers often wish for is a reality. They’re just looking in the wrong place. You can find it in choosing the right collaborative software.
I recently participated in an ARA Mentors panel with three other male executives from Seattle on the topic of “Women in Technology: The Male Perspective.” There were no women on the panel, but plenty in the audience of over 250. Though some will think a group of men discussing the lack of women in tech exacerbates the problem, I think it’s an important point for male leaders to address — because the reality is, the majority of tech leaders are men. It’s a subject I take personally and seriously, but I also knew I needed to proceed with discretion and care. Here are some highlights from our talk.
Transparency isn’t just another business buzzword. It’s the lifeforce of your team’s performance. The word may be thrown around like it’s inherent in workflow, but simply sharing dates and a perpetual “all systems go” with partners and stakeholders doesn’t qualify as transparency. Failing to convey the true status of your project further delays progress by causing confusion, unwanted surprises, and duplicated work. Even worse — it’s just plain dishonest. Do you want to increase performance and accountability on your team? Eliminate the bad surprises before they delay another phase? Simultaneously build trust among your clients and peers?