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  • Review of our top productivity posts for a summer of getting thing done

    • By jennifer
    • |
    • Friday, June 21, 2013

    Today marks the start of summer. The long sunny days and too-short weekends often leave us wanting to get more done - outside the office.  Yet, we also realize that the more productive we are, the more potential we'll have to reward ourselves and optimize summer.

    To help you out, we're recapping salient, summer-appropriate points from five of our top productivity posts. Our hope is that with the right productivity strategy, you'll be able to more readily step away from the keyboard and literally "spend" your summer time most enjoyably.

    lifehacks1. Eight #lifehacks that will allow you to spend more time doing the things you love.

    • Keep a laundry basket in the back of your car to use whenever you go shopping. Makes bringing things in the house much easier.
    • Wish you could shut down your PC by sending a text message? This hack lets you do just that and it saves you time from having to walk over to your computer.

    2. Top 5 winning CommHacks featuring workflow updates for the communications industry.

    • Ramsey Mohsen's "time quilting" strategy. Identify the small blocks of time you do have: a five minute break mid-day, 10 minutes waiting in line somewhere, 20 minutes at the doctor's office, etc. These are your time quilts. Use those little scraps of time to tackle the un-done things on your work or personal to do list: research for a blog post, learn a new skill, reply to a tough email or move a side project along.

    2. Nine social media #workhacks to make your company more likeable online.

    • Quell the power of distraction and instead, schedule short bursts of work for your social media strategy (or any other regular task). Instead of tweeting, liking, posting and sharing throughout the day, schedule a 5 - 15 minute swath of time a few times a day to engage your audience, build relationships and share great content. 
    • Put the internet to work for you with IFTTT. Create recipes that automate, or at least reduce, time spent on tasks. For example, you can create a trigger like email, text message or phone call to take place when your favorite website shares a new post.

    get more done in less time3. How to get more done in less time for PR and marketing pros.

    Learn how to run your social editorial calendar without a spreadsheet, monitor online news stories faster than 99% of your peers and more.

    • Get out of email and into a productivity platform (see slides 31 - 45). Tip: group everything. Figure out what email works for and what it doesn't. Get the non-working tasks into a platform.
    • Optimize your content marketing strategy. Stop emailing and using spreadsheets and instead, use an online, sharable editoriable calendar (like Tracky's editorial calendar module that you can copy and make your own) to store great content ideas, create and share documents, assign tasks to team members and guest contributors and more.  (See slide 28 for where to find content ideas).
    • Bonus: allow your research to double as social media content, in real-time

    share with your boss4.  Selectively share your awesome productivity skills with your boss.

    This is for the "doers" out there who want to showcase just how much they get done. Hey, it might even help your chances of getting a raise. (Not guaranteed, but it's worth a shot).

      • As Sarah Evans shares, his first mentor taught her, "Nothing is done until the people who needed it done know it’s done.” 
      • Don't fear your performance review, make it rock! When you implement a process to regularly share what you're getting done (like this free module), you'll amp up your authority and give your boss even more reasons to give you a raise.
      • Plus, it's a great way to boost your own self-confidence and career building initiatives.

    5. How checklists can make you smarter

    • Use checklists to help motivate you to get repetitive stuff done.
      Create a master Daily To Do List to add more structure to your day and help you keep track of all that you're getting done.
    • Define what's most important for you to accomplish in life. Make checklists for personal, work and future projects. Outsource some to do's to facilitiate teamwork and discipline.
    • Tracky's new checklist view optimizes the intent of quick tasking while giving you the ability to assign tasks, set due dates, create and share files within a simple to do heading.

    Since it's the first day of the summer and the weekend is upon us, maybe the first step you should take for a productive and enjoyable summer is to sign up for Tracky (if you're not already a user) and create a "Productivity Tips" track. Link to this post in the Disucssions area and "pin it." Set a due date for it to remind yourself of these and other great workhacks.

    productivity track

    Now, go sip something cold and enjoy your weekend!

  • Using Google+ Communities Like a Boss - a Tracky Whitepaper

    • By sarah
    • |
    • Friday, December 21, 2012

    Google+ Communities launched on December 6th. Communities are basically groups for shared interests via the Google+ social network. I was actually one of the first to instigate a thriving Google+ Community, a PR and marketing group, when it launched a couple weeks ago. In fact, Jennifer Gosse and I were at lunch with Caroline McCarthy of Google+ the day that Communities launched and got to hear firsthand how to best utilize them.

    Communities can be private or public, host Hangouts and include custom categories but there's so much more to it. That's why I created a guide on "Using Google+ Communities Like a Boss." Have you wondered whether Google+ Communities are worth engaging with? Or maybe you're curious how to leverage them for your own industry, hobby or brand. Help yourself to this in-the-trenches advice and see if starting - or joining - Communities is right for you. 

    View or download the guide at SlideShare -->

    Google+ Communities guide

  • Welcome to Tracky. Now what?

    • By sarah
    • |
    • Tuesday, October 30, 2012

    Post by Sarah Evans, Tracky's Chief Evangelist

    Connect. Collaborate. Share.

    Don’t worry. We won’t ever leave you hanging. It can be overwhelming staring at a blank profile page or tracks. Never fear! We’re in the process of building out modules that make starting projects even simpler. For now, we have an amazing archive of tips and FAQ’s to help you out.

    If you can’t find the answer you need (or just don’t feel like looking), post your question here: https://tracky.com/37070.

    Here goes:

    FAQs

    • I joined Tracky. Now what? Do a little a dance. Make a few tracks. Get down tonight! You're on Tracky! No seriously, you should start a group (a team or a project), invite some members (members of your team or people to help you finish your project), and start a track to help you get some stuff done. Simply add people via the Members tab of a track or drag and drop them in a group or track.
    • What is a track? Boring folks might call these "tasks". We lovingly call them tracks. You can store anything and everything in a track — whatever your heart desires — whether it's a task you have to get done ASAP or a cool quote you'd like to share with some of your friends or coworkers. In short, Tracks are like Tweets for doers: they're little bits of information that you'd like to comment or act upon.
    • What is a group? We’re not ashamed to say that Tracky is a lot like a mullet: all business in the front, all social party in the back. Groups let you collaborate with anyone, anywhere, on whatever needs to happen. Tracky helps you find the people and groups that you want to collaborate with and immediately start planning projects with them. Quickly add members to tracks, assign team leaders, designate milestones, track time, chat securely, upload and share files, and report on progress within the stream interface.
    • How do I invite someone to a group? With an invitation. Here’s how.
    • Is my information private? Yes! All tracks are private by default. And, you can rest easy knowing your data is stored in the most secure data warehouse in the world. There are actually three tiers of access in each track: secret, private and public.
    • What does making a track “secret” do? This is the ultimate privacy setting meaning it is only visible between you and those you add in that particular track. You can have a secret track in both private and public groups. If a track is “private” that means everyone in the group can see it. If a track is marked “public” anyone searching Tracky can see it.
    • What are pins? You can use the pin feature for whatever you’d like. If it helps, think about it like your most frequently viewed tracks or those you want quick access to. Simply click the pin on a track and it’s added to your pin view. You can also deselect a pin at anytime.
    • Do you have an app? Yes! We currently have an iOS app that’s good to go. While not as robust as our browser version, you will be able to access your tracks and receive push notifications on the go. If you're not an iPhone user, you can access Tracky via a mobile web browser. Since Tracky is built in HTML5, you can interact with it like you would on a computer.
    • Why should I get email notifications? It might seem counterintuitive, but email notifications actually help reduce email. Each day you’ll receive Tracky updates with what’s approaching deadline. You can also receive email updates anytime anyone updates a group or track. You can simply reply to the update and your comments will show up inline in the discussion. That’s right, you don’t even need to be “in” Tracky to collaborate with your team. If you want email notifications but not as often, feel free to change your notification settings in a group (upper right) or in your Account Settings - Notifications.

    TIPS

    • Tidy up your track stream by hiding tracks. Hiding doesn't complete or delete a track, it simply moves it aside. Click the [Hide] button on the track window or page view to hide a track at any time.
    • Instant message other users. You can chat with other online members by clicking the green dot on their user profile.
    • There’s a calendar view, too. Calendars are available for users, group, and even filters.
    • Personalize your URLs. You can change the URL (web address) of your user profile and/or group. Here’s how.
    • Make some words bold in your track. There’s a super secret way you can bold and italicize words in a track or discussion. Simply add two asterisks (**) at the beginning and end of a word or phrase for bold (e.g. **this makes it bold**) or one asterisk at the beginning and end of a word or phrase for italics (e.g. *this makes it italicized*)


    Want to become a Tracky superuser? Let us know and we’ll let you in the mix. Email sarah[at]tracky.com.

  • Tracky's chief evangelist contributes to @Sprinklr's new e-book on how to scale social media for the enterprise client

    • By sarah
    • |
    • Tuesday, October 30, 2012

    Large organizations tend to be at a disadvantage with social media. They often experience the “too big to scale” phenomenon. Questions like who will lead social media efforts to implementing a social media policy overwhelm executives. While there’s lots of free advice available on the interwebz, you’ll likely spend a lot of time trying to pull the bits and pieces together into a skeleton of a plan. That's not a good use of anyone's time.

    open social collaborationSocial media management system Sprinklr just released a comprehensive thought leadership e-book on how the enterprise world can scale social. If there’s one thing all 30 experts agree on, it’s that it can be done. It's one of the main reasons we invented Tracky, a social collaboration platform that can handle the largest of brands. We believe that in order to scale social you need to first scale your project and time management. If you currently function in chaos, you can expect your social media efforts to get the same results.

    Tracky chief evangelist Sarah Evans (@PRsarahevans) covered "How to Scale the Social Media Corporate Team at the Enterprise Level" (page 29). Her most important tip is to provide your corporate social media team with the tools and equipment they need to do their jobs. As important as the hardware and tech gadgets is your social collaboration platform -- it can make or break your team's effectiveness.

    corporate social media management

    As you read this great resource from Sprinklr, think about how Tracky can assist your team. We're always here to chat. Email Sarah at sarah<at>tracky.com.

    You can check out the entire (free) e-book, below. And, here’s a list for all contributors who are active on Twitter.

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