I Googled “mobile productivity” and I couldn’t find an actual definition. So if you asked me what I think it means, I would say “the ability to conduct/maintain operations outside of a normal business/working environment”. That could mean conducting a business meeting from a taxi cab or in an airport terminal. Forwarding documents and other important information to all of the necessary parties. Even creating/editing time-sensitive documents. Of course, the one tool the most, if not all professionals use nowadays to stay connected and stay productive out of the office is a smartphone/tablet device.
But how do you use these devices to make sure you are getting things done no matter where your are? I have come up with a couple of tips that should help you use your mobile device(s) keep your productivity up, even if you are away from your desk.
1. Stay Organized and Synchronized
Make sure all of your files are in one location and synchronized with other services/devices as much as possible. Nothing will drive you crazy more than trying to figure out if that spreadsheet or invoice that you are about to send with your smartphone is the most up to date version. Take some time to coral all of the different versions of a file from all your devices and devise a plan keep everything the same. Cloud computing/storage solutions do a great job of offering one location that you can access, no matter what device you use, in order to view documents and share with others.
2. Create Shortcuts
Try to reduce the number of steps it takes to access information, upload/share/email a file, image, url link, etc. For example, if you know you’re going to a networking event, plan ahead and draft up an “It was a pleasure to meet you…”email with all of your contact information, so when you link up, all you have to do is insert an email address, formal name, and you can send the email off right at the event while the conversation is still fresh. You may have to tweak the message depending on the conversation, but it will save you time trying to figure out what you talked about when trying to send that same email days later.
3. Remain Flexible
The key to being productive on a mobile device is recognizing there are may ways to send/receive documents, emails, contact information, via a mobile device. So if you have taken the time to set up your exchange accounts on your smartphone (email, contacts, calendars) and for whatever reason, your accounts are acting up, you can rest assured that as long as you have a network connection, you can access you accounts via their “mobile-friendly” versions. Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoo, etc. all have mobile sites that will let you access your calendar, draft/forward an important email, and find a phone number from your address book. Always helps to have a plan-B.
Of course all of the above is my opinion since there is no one sure-fire method of staying productive. So let us know what are some ways you get things done while on the go? Be sure to list any of your go-to apps, services to share as well.