One of my favorite things about doing what I do is the ability to work from wherever, whenever. Yes, it makes taking a vacation awkward as I’m always that person by the pool with my laptop. However, apps designed to make running a business remotely are on the rise and that makes me think I’m not the only one multi-tasking.
Sure technology is not always great. Some apps solve a problem another app created but there are a few apps that truly make a difference in your day-to-day operations as an event planner and sometimes even helps keep your overhead down.
Here are my absolute top 5 favorite planner hacks:
1. Lua – This app enables you to communicate with an entire events team (venue, caterer, florist) without ever having to save over 50 numbers that you’re just going to delete after the event. This app is really superior above the other communication tools because I’ve put it to the test with one of the largest events in New York… the New York City Wine and Food Festival. We’re talking over hundreds of event managers, volunteer leads and registration staff all spread out across Brooklyn and Manhattan being able to communicate effectively and quickly. AND it’s user friendly!
2. Evernote – How many times have you walked away from a networking event with over 20 cards in your pocket? Ok, how many times have those cards sat on your desk and weeks passed when you finally think “I don’t even think this person is going to remember me if I email them now …”? You’ve done all that sweating and networking for nothing! Do yourself a favor and pick between the 3 packages Evernote offers. You’ll scan each card and Evernote will ask you if you would like to email the person a templated email you’ve written like “It was nice meeting you, here’s my contact info” AND, here’s the best part… it will ask you if you want to connect with them on LinkedIn. And that’s not all folks! It also saves handwritten notes and drawings you can access at any time.
3. Scannable – Don’t ever buy a scanner. Ever. This app is FREE and scans your contracts and documents in perfect order and resolution. It’s actually joined to Evernote so you can attach scanned documents to specific contacts. And of course, if you can scan it, you can organize it; receipts, posters, collateral, price sheets, etc…
4. Dropbox – Again keeping in the spirit of staying mobile, Dropbox is your business server without that loud, heavy humming apparatus sitting in your office closet (What office? You work in a coffee shop!) With most servers, your access is limited to the location where the server resides. Of course you can pay thousands of dollars creating a custom server that allows you to work remotely but here’s another idea… Spend $12.50 per user, per month and get yourself file sharing and storage at once.
5. Etsy – One of the most depressing moments of an event is when it’s all over and I’m looking at the thousands of dollars spent for a few hours and everything must be thrown in the garbage. This app not only serves as a place for inspiration for event design and décor items, but it’s sister app allows you to sell your items to other planners or designers looking for fabulous event décor to buy. So in a way, this is the event industry’s karmic way of paying it forward and staying Green.
There are many more apps that are stellar but didn’t make the list. For a full list, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’re happy to share our resources.