Home offices are convenient, inexpensive and efficient, but they don’t come equipped with all of the office perks. Office-groomed professionals must adjust to life without a personal assistant. Luckily, technology is taking on many of the tasks traditionally left to these under-appreciated employees.
Google to the Rescue
A good personal assistant keeps everything in order without much hassle. That’s what Google does with its series of web applications. With a Gmail account, users have access to their email, calendar, documents and contacts in a unified location. If you’re working on an email and it’s time for a conference, the appointment will automatically pop up on your screen.
Through the new Outlook.com, Microsoft has adopted many of the same features, according to www.Internetproviders.com. If you’re hesitant to switch over to Google apps, Outlook is a capable substitute. The concept is simple: keep as much information as possible in a unified location. That’s what personal assistants do, right.
The Mobile Companion
Computer tools are helpful, but the life of a telecommuter is life on the road, so email apps and calendars can only go so far. Luckily, app developers have brought these functions on your smartphone. One of the exciting new assistant apps is Osito. Dubbed a “predictive intelligence app to simplify your life,” Osito keeps you alert and timely. Say a meeting is running long before you have to catch a flight. Osito will access your GPS data, gauge traffic and predict how long it takes to get to the airport. When you get to the airport, check Osito for your travel itinerary and boarding pass. Land and Osito will have your hotel information handy — no need to check your email. It’s the closest thing to a personal assistant we’ve ever seen.
2 Organizing Tips
Digital tools can organize your schedule, but working from home demands an organized mind. As you harness technology to boost output, push yourself to rely less on these productivity apps and more on proper organization habits. Consider this a crash course on becoming a personal assistant … for you, citing an article from Latebloomergrads.wordpress.com.
- Note Your Phone Calls: If you’ve ever had a good personal assistant, he or she recorded concise, detailed messages. Do the same with phone calls. That way, if you forget that important discussion from earlier, you’ll have a note to jog your memory. Record the time, person on the other end, phone number and call takeaway. (Ex.10:00 a.m., John Smith, 123-555-6789, San Francisco presentation Monday)
- Don’t Overcommit: If you’re wondering why days no longer transition smoothly from one task to the next, it’s probably because your personal assistant was better than you at managing time. As a basic guideline, leave at least 30 minutes between meetings. When things run long (or you need a break), you won’t be rushing to your next appointment.