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The 5 Tools I Use To Stay On Top Of Everything

by Yiannis Gavrielides, CEO of Covve

I have always been organised and I don’t like to let anything drop; I am an 80:20 person and I look for efficiency in everything I do; I love gadgets and technology and I am an early adopter. I need all the help I can get to manage the combination of: (i) running a startup, (ii) being a board member in a few young and fast-growing companies, (iii) remaining close with my family consisting of a demanding wife and 3 kids, and still having time to spend with my friends and my hobbies.

After trying a myriad of apps here are the few that I use daily:

1. Evernote web clipper.

I clip as I browse to:

  • read later (the obvious use case), I also use Instapaper for this;
  • remember thought provoking articles to be discussed with friends;
  • as research for work;
  • to keep notes on my hobbies, be it food, theatre or cocktails.

2. Simplenote.

As it says on the tin, easy and fast, seamlessly syncing across all my devices and keeping history in case you wish to revert to a previous point in time. It’s where I am writing this article now, so I can easily move between my phone, my iPad and my laptop seamlessly. I also keep my long to-do list here.

3. Covve.

to build, grow and make the most of my contacts list (disclaimer, I’m the founder). I keep notes on what to say and what was said. I get reminded to stay in touch with people and even notified with the excuse to call! “Call John as his company just bought its main competitor”.

4. Siri.

I can’t say I am stretching her capabilities but I often use her to quickly set a reminder as soon as it comes to mind: “remind me to contact John after I leave the office”.

5. Dropbox and all things cloud – making hardware irrelevant.

I keep all my files on Dropbox and have them easily accessible on my phone. All my pictures are on Flickr, my shared documents on Google drive. My laptop got stolen last year with no impact on my work; I was working on my tablet within minutes and lost no documents.

It’s not just up to the tools but a combination of the right choice of them and discipline in using them as part of our daily routine.

Here are a few examples that work for me:

  • I always take notes, in meetings and calls and often straight on paper; then I make sure I transfer to electronic format when I get back to a PC (Simplenote); these include a check list of what I need to discuss with a person in our next meeting (Covve);
  • anything that pops to mind, if worthwhile goes in my notes, wherever I am, to make sure I do not forget about it later (Simplenote);
  • I closely manage a to-do-list, making sure I often go through it and reprioritise (Simplenote);
  • I make the most of deadtime like driving, I visit my “people to call list” (Covve), and also listen to audiobooks or podcasts, and fire reminders to Siri as they come to mind.

I would love to hear of your favourite apps to manage your work and personal life, so write me a comment or shoot me an email on yiannis@covve.com.

 

Yiannis Gavrielides is the CEO of Covve, a sophisticated contact and relationship management platform disguised as a simple address book app. He has also co-founded companies in industries he loves, like theatre and cocktails. In his previous life he was a consultant at Deloitte Consulting and L.E.K. Consulting and a banker at Eurobank EFG.

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