Category Archives: Success

How to stay productive in the darker weather

DropTask productivity in dark weather

We all know the feeling this time of year; you look out of the window around 5 pm to find the winter darkness has already settled in for the evening. If you’re finding the dark weather is making you demotivated or less productive than usual, you’re not alone. With our days becoming shorter, darker and colder, it’s not uncommon to start to flag and feel tired earlier in the afternoon. It happens to the best of us – however, if you’re mindful of the effect the dark weather is having on you, you can take simple, effective steps to dig yourself out of a productivity slump.

So, if you’re feeling the winter blues starting to sink in, here’s how DropTask can help you tackle them head-on to help boost your mood and stay focused all season long.

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The Science of Productivity, and how you can use it

Staying productive is something that everybody strives for. Efficiency comes in ebbs and flows – some days we achieve a lot, others not so much. Like everything else in the world, there is a science to productivity. While general advice tends to be specific to each person, the facts don’t lie. Putting these scientifically-proven tips to use is guaranteed to give your productivity a boost. So, here are four ways you can use the science of productivity to boost your working abilities.

set work reminders in DropTask

Get started

I know what you’re thinking – “well, duh”, but studies have shown that being able to get started on a new task is actually one of the biggest hurdles to productivity. We often put off starting a project because our brain fixates on the hardest parts. Rather than seeing the work as a series of manageable chunks, we hone in on the most challenging parts and allow them to overwhelm us.

There are two key ways to combat this: one is to break work down into smaller, actionable tasks and the other way is to hold yourself accountable. Enter DropTask. In our digital age, a handwritten to-do list just isn’t going to cut it. DropTask allows you to breakdown your work in the way that suits you; create your project, input the tasks that make up the project and use checklists to break each task into stages. Working in this way will make getting started a million times easier. A psychologically backed theory, known as the Zeigarnik Effect, means we’re more likely to finish something once we’ve started it. This works even for the tasks which seem too hard to ever complete – making a start might just be the push you need to see it through to the end. To add an extra layer of accountability to the work you’ve begun, ensure you add Due Dates for tasks. You can also set reminders via DropTask, so you’re never taken by surprise by upcoming deadlines.

Boost your scientific productivity in planner on DropTask

Do what matters

You’ve probably heard the saying “first things first” – but, have you ever thought about what that actually means? While most of us come into work with a vague idea of what we’ll be working on, very few actually have their entire day planned out. Being productive isn’t about getting all your tasks done, it’s about completing the tasks which will help you reach your end goals. An illusion of busyness can often fool us into thinking we’re getting more done than we actually are. The reality is having a lot to do, isn’t the same as doing a lot.

In the office, it’s easy to fall into the trap of working in a reactionary manner. If someone mentions a job to you, you’ll start working on that just because it’s fresh in your mind, not because it’s actually your most pressing task. Sticking to your priorities will make your work timely and efficient, helping you stay on top of deadlines – regardless of what work lands on your desk in the meantime.

With DropTask, prioritization couldn’t be simpler. Use your DropTask Planner to filter your tasks onto Now, Next and Soon boards. When deadlines get bumped up or new tasks crop up, it’s easy to rejig your working priorities. A daily summary email from DropTask will also show you your day mapped out, so you can spend less time planning and more time doing.

urgency and importance ratings for work in DropTask

Build positive habits

Contrary to popular belief, consistently staying on task has little to do with willpower, and a lot to do with routine. Psychologists have suggested that willpower acts much like a muscle; the more we use it, the more it gets worn out. The upshot of this is, willpower alone isn’t enough to keep you productive. Instead, the most successful people create good working habits which help them to stay on task.

So, how do you start building a good work routine and stick to it? DropTask naturally lends itself to creating an easy to follow schedule. Having a central working hub where all your projects, tasks, and deadlines are stored will take the stress out of staying on top of your work. Add each new task into DropTask, set due dates, Urgency and Importance attributes to start practicing positive working habits in and out of the office. Using DropTask to structure your working day makes actually sticking to the tasks you have lined up far easier. Before you know it, DropTask will get you in the flow and you’ll never fall behind on upcoming tasks again.

Discuss work with others in DropTask

Focus your energy

Having focus can be more challenging than it sounds. When you have lots of tasks to complete, it’s often tempting to flit between them, as it wrongly gives the impression you’re achieving more overall. In actual fact, multitasking is the enemy of focused work. Providing your full attention to the one task you’re working on is essential to achieving the best results.

Being able to say no when you have too much on is crucial. When your team uses DropTask, task ownership is instantly clear. Forget misunderstandings – the avatars displayed for each task visually communicate who the task belongs to, and filters will show how many tasks they’ve been assigned. Discussions allow for quick enquiries into tasks and projects. Using the @ tag will alert your colleagues when you’ve mentioned them, keeping everyone in the loop. With fewer emails and demands, you’ll be able to focus on the work in front of you.

Become a productivity expert by employing these scientific techniques when working in DropTask. Sign up for FREE today!

Managing a remote workforce with DropTask

Back to School

The way we work is changing. Companies are seeing rewards from a more flexible approach to working practices. Gone are the days when your talent pool was restricted to a reasonable commuting distance from your headquarters. Today, companies have opened themselves up to simply securing the best person for the job, regardless of their location or time zone.

However, with teams dispersed across various workspaces and geographical locations, remote working also has its challenges. But, with DropTask (and our top tips below), you’ll feel in control when managing your team of flexible workers.

DropTask Planner

Create a digital workplace

Though you’re not in the same physical space as your team, DropTask allows you to simulate an office environment within its clever interface. By creating multiple projects, and seeing your team’s avatars on their assigned tasks, you’ll feel as though you’re in a virtual meeting room.

DropTask’s Canvas View also enables you to visualize workloads, priorities and task dependencies. By attaching files to tasks, your team will be able to store and access all of their work within DropTask. Much more efficient than a filing cabinet or desktop storage space, your seamless digital workspace will ensure that nothing gets lost.

Group Project

Set clear expectations

By communicating with your team digitally, both yourself and your team will have a record and overview of all accountabilities and wider plans across the business. Through creating projects, assigning tasks to team members and setting due dates, everyone will be on the same page. This means no steps in a process will be missed and no work gets duplicated.

As a manager of a remote and seemingly invisible team, trust is a must. Stay focused on goals, rather than activities and your employees will take care of the rest. Employees can easily assign their tasks to be done Now, Next or Soon, as well as adding personal tasks to their Planner. With this innovative alternative to a calendar, they’ll be able to manage their daily workflow with a tool that’s as flexible as they are.

With DropTask, employees can work flexible hours, allowing them to work at whatever time they perform best. Whether or not your team are online at the same time, it’s easy to see where project members left off with particular tasks and documents. This means everyone will be kept in the loop, despite the difference in working patterns and time zones.

Daily Email Summary

Give timely feedback

With the ability to attach and access files within DropTask, you’ll be able to easily review your team’s work, providing feedback quicker than ever. Using the @ tag, just like instant messaging, chat with team members using the Discussions feature on specific tasks, drastically cutting down on lengthy emails.

When you’re not meeting your team face-to-face, it’s easy to let employee motivation slip. Don’t forget to celebrate colleague successes, big or small. Use DropTask to congratulate team members when they mark tasks as completed and a burst of confetti will shower their screen. By building a positive culture with frequent communication, you’ll be able to boost morale within your workforce wherever they are in the world.

For remote working without the remote feeling, sign up to DropTask for FREE today.

Back to School made easy with DropTask

Back to School

If you’re preparing for the start of a brand new school term, DropTask can help you manage your priorities and prepare your work in time for when the bell rings. Whether you’re organizing homework deadlines, or planning your lessons for the week, DropTask will help you to stay on top of your goals for a stress-free school year.

To help you jump back into classroom life, take a look below for 3 ways you can set yourself up for success this semester. Before you know it, you’ll be armed with the knowledge and tools you need to make this semester your most productive yet.

DropTask Planner

Manage priorities with your DropTask Planner

With the DropTask Planner, you can schedule your tasks in three simple boards: Now, Next or Soon. Breaking your to-do list into smaller chunks is a much more effective way to prioritize your work, so you can stay focused on the tasks that are most important. We all know that priorities can shift and new deadlines can crop up last minute – make quick changes as priorities move around by simply dragging and dropping your tasks onto a different board, so you can take control of your workload.

These simple boards are only visible to you, giving you your own space to organize your thoughts and tasks in a way you can understand. Say goodbye to your traditional to-do list, and use the DropTask Planner for the flexibility and ease to re-order and manage your tasks as priorities might change around you.

Group Project

Use Projects to categorize your workload

DropTask’s Projects give focus to things that need to be done and allow you to categorize tasks and responsibilities into one productive workspace. Create your own private project to display your personal lesson plans or revision notes. Alternatively, invite students or classmates to a group project so you can easily work together on a project.

By creating a group project, you can further encourage teamwork and collaboration with discussions. Keeping your conversations and assignments together in one space will make it easier to work on your tasks as they develop, and maintain a seamless flow of communication with others. Easily send and receive comments and feedback by using the ‘@’ symbol within a specific task to mention your colleagues. When someone mentions you in a comment, you will receive a notification within the app, so you won’t miss any activity.

Daily Email Summary

Stay on track with daily email summaries

Start your day on track and make sure nothing slips through the net. We’ll send you an email every morning to let you know which tasks you have to work on, as well as which ones are overdue, due today and due tomorrow. Within each task that you create, you can add due dates so we can send you these helpful reminders to ensure you’re always one step ahead of the game.

Want to add more to your tasks? When setting your due dates, you can also add extra details such as the level of importance, urgency and effort required for each task. There is also an adjustable progress bar, so you can specify exactly how far your task has left to completion.

Sign up for DropTask FREE today, and make this school year your most productive and efficient yet.

Become the best leader: 3 tips to manage your team successfully

There is no golden rulebook for how to get the best out of your team, but luckily DropTask is here to help. A good leader knows how to set deadlines, when to ask for updates and how to communicate effectively with their team. With DropTask, you’ll be able to maintain good team relationships, acknowledge great work and delegate tasks to those who have strengths in certain areas.

With DropTask, we make it easy for you to lead a happy and productive team. Read on to learn how.

Set realistic deadlines
Deadlines. Some people love them, others dread them. But we need deadlines to get things done, managers included. The next time you assign a task to a member of your team, ensure you make expectations clear on when it needs to be completed using Start and Due Dates. In DropTask, select the task deadline from the Start and Due Date picker. Once assigned, the task’s deadline will automatically appear in their Calendar. With an overview of their workload, you’ll be able to spot if deadlines and priorities need to shift and move them accordingly. Simple drag and drop the task’s deadline to a new date in the Calendar and feel rest assured that your team has a realistic deadline to work towards.

Keep track, without micromanaging
There’s a fine line between checking up on progress and constantly nudging for updates. Micromanagers will never get the full potential out of the people they manage. If you want an update on a shared project without interrupting your team, head to the Project Browser to see how things are getting on. Here, you can see what tasks have been started, placed on hold, fallen overdue and completed. This gives you the higher-level overview that a manager needs to map out the best next steps for your team project and offer support wherever it is needed.

Have some fun
According to ‘301 Ways to Have Fun at Work’, there’s a direct link between employees who have fun at work and those who are highly productive. DropTask helps to highlight those team achievements that deserve to be celebrated. Taking the time to recognize hard work keeps team morale and motivation high. And it’s not just big project milestones that deserve recognition and praise. With DropTask’s Congratulations feature, you can send your team a fun animation when they complete any task. What might seem like no-big-deal to some, could be a huge personal achievement to another, and as a manager, it’s crucial to acknowledge this.

How do you inspire your team to go the extra mile? Use DropTask as the go-to tool for a happy productive team. Sign up today for FREE.

3 tips for spring cleaning your workload

Now that Spring has sprung, the evenings are getting lighter and the temperature is heating up. While we welcome the change in seasons with open arms, it got the DropTask team thinking. What better time than the present to freshen up our workloads? This spring, use DropTask to dust the cobwebs off messy workloads. When our work environments are chaotic it restricts our ability to focus. It’s time for you to get organized, freshen up your to-dos and make sure you are on track to achieve your goals. Take a look below at how DropTask will help you spring into action.

Keep everything in one place
It’s long been believed that a messy desk is a sign of low productivity. Instead of using your desk as a space to hold documents, conversations and important notes, pour everything into DropTask. Create Tasks in a collaborative project for everything you need to get done. If you’re working with others, Assign Tasks to team members so that everyone knows who’s working on what. The great thing about DropTask is that you can Attach Files to your tasks. So the next time you’re responsible for an important document, simply upload it to DropTask so that you know exactly where it can be found. Documents are stored in the task which means they’re easily retrievable. Not only saving you time that you’d usually spend searching for documents but in return, making you more productive too.

Create a defined structure
Sometimes, when we don’t know the next steps to take in a project, things get stalled and fall behind schedule. And, while we miss these deadlines, we end up creating more work for ourselves. So that you and other team members are aware of the project cycle, drag and drop tasks in the Canvas on top of one another to create Task Dependencies. These visual arrows will help you define the order of steps you’re going to take in the project. With a clear view of the path you’re going to take, you’ll gain a big picture overview of the project and ensure nothing falls behind.

Remember to go the extra mile
Workloads can become messy when we don’t complete tasks to our maximum potential. How many tasks have you started, but not yet completed? Push yourself to go the extra mile every time you’re assigned a task, and ensure you get it across the finish line. Every step counts. Use the Progress Percentage Bar to indicate how far you’ve got left to go. Your progress will be visible on the task, so you’ll always be reminded of the work that’s left to complete. Want to hear the best part? When you complete a task, you’ll be prompted to give yourself a pat on the back with the new Congratulations animation. Plus, all of your Completed Tasks will contribute to your DropTask Achievements, so you’re always one step closer to your next productivity milestone, and you’ll gain an instant boost of motivation, too. So what’re you waiting for? Finish those ‘nearly there’ tasks and reap the rewards today!

With DropTask, say goodbye to messy workloads and hello to a refreshed workspace, powering up your productivity and helping you to get more stuff done. With these three tips, you’ll feel re-energized and be rearing to get to work this spring, your most productive season yet.

Use DropTask to organize your workload. Sign up today, it’s FREE!

Don’t rely on luck. Here are 3 ways to guarantee success

With St.Patrick’s Day right around the corner, it got us thinking. Wouldn’t it be great if we could have the luck of the Irish all year round? We all have days when we’re super productive, then have days where we seem to get nowhere. Learning the art of being productive is a key factor in determining how successful we may become. But, what happens when we try to be productive and luck just isn’t in our corner?

Today, we’ve noted down 3 tips to help get you onto the accelerator to success and to ensure you’re productive all year round.

Visualize, visualize, visualize
Did you know that visualization is a key method in reaching a desired goal? Picture yourself getting that promotion, going on that dream holiday or buying that car. Whatever you want to achieve, visualize it happening. Once you’ve identified what you want to achieve, think about what you need to do to get there. Create circular, color-coded tasks to act as visual reminders, encouraging you to start work on them. In return you’ll be more productive. Add a Cover Image to your task to make it more personal and visually appealing. Tasks can be created for any aspect of your life, meaning that the possibilities to achieve success are endless.

Work smarter, not harder
Sometimes, when we’re working to try and finish a project or task, it feels as though we are getting nowhere fast. Instead of making real progress, we end up just being busy. We’re often expected to do more work with fewer resources and tighter deadlines. Don’t waste the time that you’ve been granted, instead, use it wisely with DropTask. Work smarter by scheduling important dates, such as March 17th, to ensure you’re aware of upcoming events and deadlines. The built-in Calendar will present all of your to-dos for the coming weeks and months ahead. If you need to rearrange, simply drag and drop your task into its new date. By noting down everything that requires your attention, you’ll be able to delegate your time accordingly.

Stop procrastinating
We all have heavy, important tasks that hang over our heads and weigh us down. Stop using the ‘I’ll do it tomorrow’ excuse. Instead, use Brian Tracy’s world renowned ‘Eat That Frog’ methodology and get working on that task which has the biggest impact to your success, right at the start of your day. The ‘Eat That Frog’ methodology aims to limit procrastination and help you make meaningful leaps towards your end goals. Use the Urgency icon to identify what requires your focus, then assign Filters to narrow down what’s being displayed in front of you. By doing this, you’ll be able to fully focus on to-dos for the day and limit the chances of distraction. Plus, with your important tasks out of the way, you’ll be able to look forward to future plans.

Secure success all year round with DropTask. Signup today for FREE!