For the past 6 years I’ve worked out of my bed, coffee shops (sometimes multiple coffee shops per day), and anywhere else around the world with a stable WiFi connection. I’ve been able to work remotely because of the growing number of tools at my disposal as an entrepreneur/business owner. Being connected 24/7, around the globe has been a curse in some respects but it has also been a blessing in disguise. Allowing me to connect with my team in my warehouse and offices, and run my businesses with relatively ease and freedom.

My quality of life has really been dictated by the quality of the tools I decide to use. Throughout the years I’ve adopted some and thrown away others. My personal favorites and absolutely necessities to make sense of my life are as follows.

DOCUMENTATION:

Evernote

Evernote is my end all, be all note taking platform for any ideas, notes, processes, documentations I want to keep and organize. It has even served as my drafting word processor to replace Word itself. It’s extremely simple to use, it syncs with all my devices and it’s becoming ever easier to share and collaborate on documents with others. Last year they added Skitch, a image mark-up tool that is extremely easy to use and the default font and arrows for mark-up are really clean and presentable. I can quickly take a screen-shot and mark-it-up with notes for my remote designers and developers.

WeTransfer

WeTransfer is an amazing free service that allows you to transfer large files to others. I personally use it to transfer audio and video files to our editors overseas and collaborate on large files that would otherwise be impossible to send via email. I even prefer it over DropBox at times because I don’t want to manage and delete unnecessarily large files in my DropBox that do not need to be stored there.

TEAM MANAGEMENT:

Trello

Trello was introduced to me by Pierre as a replacement for team based task management (to-dos). It follows the Toyota Kanban methodology that creates a sensible flow in the process of team to-dos. I previously used Asana and BaseCamp but found them to be too rigid and confusing when you need to dump new ideas or possible ideas into a separate bucket list. Those items weren’t “to-dos” per se, but you couldn’t really leave them off the table either. It just became overwhelming to see your list of company to-dos with a traditional to-do list. Also, you could never easily view what was in-queue or in-progress. If you use Trello correctly, you can dump a million to-dos into one bucket without muddling up what’s actually in-progress and what’s in queue. To do so, you simple create a board for all the ideas, then you create a second board for in-queue or approved ideas, and a third board for in-progress ideas with a hard limit of 3 items ONLY on the in-progress board. This way you can just drag ideas into the flow and prioritize your tasks without leaving any ideas off the table.

Confluence

Confluence is developed by Atlassian, an Australia company that has created many wonderful tools for developers like BitBucket and HipChat. However, I have replaced HipChat with a better tool below. Confluence, however, is still wonderful for permanent corporate documentation. It serves a similar purpose as Evernote, but the difference is that Evernote is more for free-flowing thoughts and notes, whereas Confluence should be used for permanent documentation like business processes and internal policies. It houses all of our internal how-tos for site management and even processes for shooting and editing videos. It is great for collaboration on documents as well but again I only recommend it as a repository for documentation that is intended to permanently reside in your corporation. It’s like your modern day corporate policies binder!

TEAM COMMUNICATION:

WhatsApp

If you live or work internationally, WhatsApp is the most universal data-based chatting/calling app. All I need is a WiFi connection and I can freely call anyone, anywhere in this world (who also has the app). Yes, you can use WeChat, Line, KakaoTalk, Facebook Messenger, or Google Hangout as well but from personal experience, nothing is as global as WhatsApp. All the other services tend to have geographical or regional audiences and limitations. Unfortunately, WhatsApp is currently only a phone app (with limited desktop app functions) but who doesn’t have a smart phone these days that wants to work remotely?

Slack

Slack has been introduced to me last year by my business partner Phil who implemented it within his own company and team. It is currently the ultimate team based chat tool because it has the most API plug-ins. It plugs into Zendesk and Trello and allows our team to discuss customer tickets and issues with ease. If you’re looking for a tool to keep your team in the loop and connected, this is it.

PERSONAL:

Todoist

Todoist was introduced to me by Daniel as a replacement for my default Apple Reminders. I use this religiously as my personal task/to-do manager. It’s a very clean app and they gamify your to-do list into a fun point achievement system. Regardless, it is extremely easy to create and color code different categories of tasks. You can even create recurring to-dos, which is a really helpful feature for inane but still important tasks like paying rent or employees.

With an endless variety of choices available today, below are some more tools curated by Kristyna Zapletalova, the inspiring and amazing founder of Maqtoob.com, where you can find thousands of more tools that may better fit your needs.

DOCUMENTS

1. Docady

Snap a photo of all the important documents you don’t want to carry around. The app will help you arrange the paperwork into relevant categories and safely store everything you might need on your travels.

2. PandaDoc

There’s no need to send your proposals or contracts via snail mail. You can easily create, share, and sign documents with legally binding electronic signature software.

3. Docracy

There’s also no rush to look for a lawyer every time you need a simple contract. Use this amazing open database of legal documents instead.

SECURITY

4. CreshPlan

Protect your data and back up all your valuable files (music, photos, documents) to an external drive or cloud. You can access them from anywhere, at any time.

5. TunnelBear

In some countries, your popular websites (e.g. Facebook, Twitter, YouTube…) may be blocked. For such cases, it’s good to have a solid VPNinstalled before you cross the borders, so you can browse the Internet without censorship.

PRODUCTIVITY

6. Sunrise

Plan your days with a calendar that connects to your favorite apps, including Facebook, Evernote, or Trello.

7. Trello

Keep track of your daily tasks and collaborate with your team on any project with this free and simple board-like app. No more endless email threads or missed deadlines.

8. Wunderlist

Organize your to-dos, set due dates, and reminders. You can also share your lists with other people and possibly assign the tasks to someone else.

9. Solo

If you work as a freelancer, most project management apps probably don’t address your specific needs. Solo will not only help you get stuff done, it will also assist with monitoring your performance, tracking your time and expenses, generating invoices, or managing clients.

10. WudaTime

Easily track the time you spend on individual tasks with the help of this free browser-based tool.

11. Gorgias

Save some minutes every time you send an email. This app will help you create nifty templates and shortcuts so you fly through your inbox super fast.

DISCIPLINE

12. Momentum

Self-discipline is the main challenge when being your own boss. This app will help you create new habits, track your daily progress, and achieve your goals.

13. Freedom

Block distracting websites and apps to skyrocket your productivity.

COMMUNICATION

14. Pie

Stay connected with your remote coworkers via an effortless team chat app. Share messages, images, GIFs, videos, music, and files. Find anything with a top-notch search function and sync everything between all devices.

15. Speak

Those who prefer to speak face-to-face can complement chatting with team video calls.

PEOPLE

16. Clarity

Schedule a call with an experienced entrepreneur and get expert advice on your business no matter where in the world you are.

17. Meetup

Meet new people at events organized by local communities all over the globe.

18. Idealist

If you wish to combine work, travel, and making the world a better place, check one of many volunteer opportunities here.

TRAVEL

19. Entrain

Those who often suffer from jet lags will make good use of this free app. It will tell you when to seek dark or light to adjust faster to new time zones.

20. PackPoint

This smart packing list app will check the weather, note the length of your stay, and consider the purpose of your trip, so you don’t forget anything important.

AND MORE

21. Dollarbird

Control your budget on your smartphone. See how much you’ve spent, plan your future expenditures, and observe your spending habits.

22. Silvrback

Don’t waste your time setting up a new website. Capture your adventures in a lean, distraction-free blog.

23. Canva

Presentations, infographics, blog post images, business cards, web banners, posters, invitations… any design related stuff is a piece of cake even for non-designers with this free, drag-and-drop app.

24. CodersClan

Get your smaller coding tasks done by professional coders in no time.

25. SuperTasker

Do you need to fix your WordPress site, create a new logo, or write a press release? All sorts of digital tasks can be delivered within hours through this website.


Find other 1,600+ handpicked tools for entrepreneurs here.

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