How To Use Dropbox

Have you arrived at a venue for your event and needed a document?  More than likely, you had to get your laptop out, get an Internet connection and find the document.

Let me tell you about Dropbox, and how it could make your life simpler.

Dropbox is a fantastic app for storing documents and accessing out of the office.  And it’s easy to use.

Let’s Get Started
To get started visit Dropbox.com and click on “Download Dropbox.”  This will walk you through setting up a user name and password.  This will setup a folder on your computer were you can store your documents to access via the Dropbox app.

The cool thing about this folder is you can open a doc from there, work on it and then save it back to your Dropbox folder.  No reason to move the file to your computer.

Once you have your account setup, download the free app for your mobile device from that devices app store.  Open up, login and you should be set to go.

Each Dropbox account starts with 2GBs of storage.  Now that might not sound like a lot, but if you’re only storing documents, that will be plenty.  You have the option to upgrade to a Pro or Teams account.

More space is also rewarded to your account via referrals from Facebook or Twitter.  I’ve done this, and have been able to increase space in my account by 2.5 gigs!

Digging In
Now that you have the Dropbox folder on your computer, you can start adding documents.  The default folder to save documents to is Public.

One of my favorite things about the Public folder is the ability to email files to others from the app.  This is great if someone needs to see a contract or itinerary you have in your Dropbox.

Another of my favorite features is the ability to share folders with others.  This is great for teams to use.  Setup a folder for your event, and share it with the people that need to access documents pertaining to that event.  They will need a Dropbox account as well.

Final Note
One important final note.  Dropbox is read only on mobile devices.  That’s ok if you’re only needing access to say PDF documents.  There are some other great apps you can get to make changes to documents on mobile devices.

Have you used Dropbox for event planning?  What tips do you have?

Don’t Forget To Plan Time

I had a boss one time who called a two o’clock meeting every Monday that she was routinely late for.  Sometimes we would start the meeting without her.  But whenever she arrived, we always had to start over.  It got so bad that people who didn’t work directly for her, started skipping the meeting.  It became a drain on everyone’s day.

Her tardiness told us our time was not very valuable to her.

My wife is the exact opposite.  She’s early to meetings, and if we’re going on a trip, she’s packing a week out.  She’s very meticulous in her planning.

What does this have to do with event planning?  Great question.  It’s certainly a life lesson, but to me it’s even bigger than that.

There is no doubt your time is important.  You’re being pulled in all different directions in planning for your event.  Your to-do list is a mile long.  One more call to make or email to send.

There is also no doubt your team’s time is important.  You’ve assigned them duties, and they now have to complete their assignments.  When you have meetings with them, keep them as brief as possible.  One great idea is to have a daily standup meeting to go over all planning details.  Why standup?  Cause it will be quick and then everybody is back to their assignments.

Another area to keep your time and deadlines in mind is when meeting with outside vendors.  These people can pull off miracles, but it’s certainly not the norm.  Always remember that old adage “An emergency on your part, does not constitute one on mine.”

Plan, and then plan some more.  And if possible add in flex time.  If it gets done sooner than you planned, the event will be that much better.

A Few Ideas On Using Evernote To Plan Your Event

I recently wrote about my new favorite app, Instagram [link to that post]. Today, I wanted to tell you about Evernote, an app that is great for productivity.

Evernote is a fantastic note taking app. But it’s really more than that. Evernote will lend itself to working great for planning your event. Let me share with you a few ways you can use this app.

First Step
To start out download the app in the App Store on your iOS device or Mac, Android Store or directly from Evernote’s website. There is a paid version and a free version, and I’ve been a user of the free version up until the last few months. So far I have seen no reason to pay for the premium version. However, there is note sharing capabilities in the premium version. If you have a team using Evernote, that could potentially be a feature you would enjoy.

One of my favorite features of this app, is that it syncs across all my devices and computers in the cloud. If I add something on my phone, it’s on my computer when I open Evernote and vice versa.

Let’s Get Started
Now that you got the app download, let’s get started. When you first open it up, you’ll notice the default notebook is your user name. We’ll talk about that later, but first start your first note and save it there. You’ll notice that Evernote will use your current location. That’s great because it will also save that information in the Note Info. You’ll also see a tab when you open Evernote called Places. In that tab, you’ll see the location that each note was created.

One feature that I like about Evernote is Tags. One way you can use that feature for your events is to always tag every note for your particular event with that event name.  For instance, maybe you have a speakers note. If it’s tagged your event name, you’ll be able to search for the speakers note for your event in the tags tab. I use this all the time when searching for notes tagged a particular way.

I mentioned Notebooks earlier. Another idea is to create a Notebook (and you’ll see that tab when you open Evernote) for your event, and file each note pertaining to your event in that notebook.

Conclusion
I believe incorporating Evernote into your workflow for event planning will make it your go to app. How are you using Evernote to plan your event?