By Arielle Mullen

If you listened closely when the clock struck midnight and 2019 arrived, you could hear the collective sigh as people everywhere remembered their New Year’s resolutions. Although yet another year has arrived and we’re still waiting for the widespread availability of flying cars promised to us by The Jetsons, and Back to the Future, there are still incredible advances in technology happening all around us.

 One common resolution is some variation of “get my life organized,” so shouldn’t we be able to rely on technology to aid in that goal? Instead, with the constantly changing landscape of tech, turning your attention away for a second can feel like an unsurmountable misstep when you turn back. Between Alexa and Siri, self-driving cars and the ability to unlock your iPhone with a facial scan, how do we ensure the technology we use to make our lives easier isn’t doing the opposite?

 As consultants, we know more than anyone how many products and tools exist that promise a simpler, more organized life. And although being distracted by these claims is easy, in the interest of supporting a “get organized” resolution in 2019, our best advice is, in a word, focus. Focus on the tools you consistently rely on. Start by considering what software you use daily. (For many, it’s those in the Microsoft Suite). After identifying what’s integral, focus on learning how to get the most out of each one, and ensuring all your software and hardware are working together to provide the best user experience possible. This tactic will aid in organizing your life (and invariably boost your productivity) more than anything else. 

 For example, did you know you can schedule future delivery dates for emails in Outlook? Or that by using Conditional Formatting in Excel, you can easily spot patterns in spreadsheets? (Especially useful when dealing with large databases, or if real-time information is a necessity). If you rely on Windows 7, it may be time to consider updating your systems. (Just kidding, it's definitely time to upgrade. Windows 7: End of Life is here!) 

Maybe this isn’t especially exciting advice to take, but we have no doubt it will help you get organized. If you’d like to learn more about how to boost your productivity or streamline your online presence, get in touch! We offer a variety of workshops and we’d love to hear from you. 

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