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5 Online tools I cannot live without

Over the last year of working from my little (but comfortable) home office,  I have found that there are tons of great apps and tools available that have helped to manage my daily working life and in return I have become more productive (well sort of!).

The following are my top 5 online tools that I use daily and what I love the most is that they are all free!

1. WhatsApp - a great app that I use every day to send messages and images from my Phone.

2. Google Apps - email calendar, docs. What's not to love?

3. Facebook - this is a no brainer a free social media outlet that shouldn't be underestimated.

4. Skype - a great communication tool that allows me to speak to clients from all over the world.

5. Evernote - is a great tool that "remembers everything". I find the free version fine for what I need it to do.

P.S another "tool" I certainly can't function without is my coffee machine..although it wasn't free it's priceless to me!!
Coffee  

Posted by Helena at 13:10

Dreams can come true...

Love2Assist evolved from the dream to balance our work and home life. Like many mums we want to raise our children in a healthy and happy environment, avoid the "Mummy guilt" and still manage to have a professional career brewing in the background.

Lets Try Something New Resized

Where to begin?

We had an business idea, time(ish) to kill and the motivation to get our business off the ground. As busy mums we need to be organised so it was only natural for us to put pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard) and a write our business "to Do list".


Our initial plan was to create a "nice" document that was well laid out with good content, but as our mother would say "you're only fooling yourself". We quickly realised that this approach was not going to work for us, we had lots to do and didn't want to waste time on a feel good document.

Instead we worked off our own visual plan and used our individual strengths to focus on certain tasks. We prioritised and assigned tasks or outsourced when possible. Each task on our to do list had a time frame associated with it. We had to be very decisive and take complete ownership of that decision.

 

We learnt so much from this process and understand the importance of investing time (but not too much) in getting organised  and prioritising to get things done.

The following are some lessons we learnt on the way:

 

  1. Set short and long term goals - our to do list overwhelmed us at times and we found that setting some short (day) and long (weeks) term goals helped us keep focused and motivated.

  2. Don't get hung up on the small things - at times we found ourselves getting stuck on a phrase or a colour or the position of an image that would take up so much of our valuable time. Working as a team helped us prioritize and get over these stumbling blocks.

  3. A Virtual Ideas Board - we created a document on a shared drive where we could drop ideas, thoughts, images etc. This proved to be a great source of  information and some of the best ideas came from this board, e.g logo design, website content, our vision etc.

  4. Rome wasn't built in a day -  a certain amount of patience is required, its impossible to get everything done . The do list is a working list  that is ongoing.

  5. The Cost Factor -  to keep costs down we utilised free software tools that are available as well as using our skills and experience when possible.

  6. Structure your working day from the start -  we both from home and love the flexibility but we found that we had to create a schedule that works for us and our family life.

  7. Stay focused remember your target market - no matter what decision we were making and ideas we were discussing we tried to think about our customers and what they would want.

  8. Outsource -  we may be biased about outsourcing but we can't all be great at everything. We outsourced certain tasks that required specialised attention and in turn saved us so much time and our sanity!

 

One of the most difficult part of starting any new business is actually taking the risk to start it in the first place. Taking the plunge into entrepreneurship requires an idea, bucket loads of bravery and lots of motivation .

Dreams Dont Work Unless You Do

Follow your dreams, take the risk, be brave and most importantly make a plan that works for you and your business type.

Posted by Helena at 13:59