Inbound information will overload you, however, Google Apps is designed for extreme productivity and getting things done quickly. The cloud computing architecture and responsive interface helps you move through information with ease.
Today, your speed of execution will differentiate you from the masses who move slowly and are less productive. The contrast is becoming more of a focal point and you will do well to learn behaviors in Google Apps to help you move fast. Here are four tips for increased productivity:
1. Set Auto-Advance Gmail Inbox Settings
Enable auto-advance as a feature in Gmail. Your goal is to keep a zero inbox. Anything that is in your inbox means it has obscure or uncommitted next steps. Your job is to move it to its next step. Thus, after opening an email, it will either be deleted (the majority), Starred (deferred) or Archived. You want to move to the next email after your current email has been processed. If you had a list of 50 emails, this feature will help you move quickly through the list.
2. Set Calendar Appointment Invitations
One of the actions for a customer or co-workers from an input or conceived next step is to have a meeting. Organizing meetings with email back and forth is wasteful. When you need a meeting to drive a group decision, group action or customer appointment, fill in the meeting details within the Google Calendar invitation settings.
This will force the recipients to accept or request a new time. You are leading with a concrete time, place and context. Be sure you place the agenda and any online meeting instructions within the description. People are busy. They just need to open the calendar during the time of the meeting on their computer or phone to know what to do.
3. Learn Gmail Keyboard Shortcut Keys
The keyboard is faster than the mouse. While in Gmail, enable the keyboard shortcut keys. Learn these first few right away and watch how fast you process email through your system:
o = Open Email
r = Reply to current email
f = Forward current email
e = Archive
# = Delete
There are many more you can add a little at a time. Read here to learn more. Commit to learning one at a time and watch your productivity increase.
4. Use Google Chat For Your Network
As we are moving fast, we need quick answers. Be sure that you add your entire team as well as any vital customers and people you work with within your Google Chat directory.
Furthermore, ensure your mobile device has Google Talk live and active. This allows you to be accessible and to chat instantly from wherever you are at.
As everyone is seeking to solve problems, you may be a vital link in the knowledge chain. The collective knowledge you carry from access to your network makes moving forward easier with Google Chat on.
Be A Student Of Productivity
There are layers within Google Apps that you can continually integrate into your workflow. Curiosity about the different tool sets which allow you to go faster will be the secret for continual increases in your personal and team productivity. Be a student and keep looking to use the available tools to drive speed. Over time, you will be moving with less friction and higher levels of execution.
What are some productivity tips you have learned?