Introduction: How to Keep on Top of Industry Trends in Minutes a Day
It’s dizzying the pace at which information is multiplying, and the expectation is that we keep on top of the trends that are shaping our industry. In an already over-scheduled day, how can a busy professional keep on top of what’s going on in her industry, and become aware of other relevant information, without devoting hours of time? The answer is to make a few productivity tools your new best friend. In a way, “How to Keep on Top of Industry Trends in Minutes a Day,” is related to “How to Read a Book a Day for 30 Days.” They are both about reading efficiently, while comprehending what you’re reading.
Most people already know where to find the best industry information online, but the issue is how to process the information quickly. The following tools will help you to be more productive, which will save you a lot of time.
For instance, Mercury Reader strips away ads so you’re not tempted to click on links, but focus on the tasks at hand, which is reading the article. Spreed allows you to read multiple words at once and also not be tempted to read over what you’ve read because the process is computerized, which results in you reading faster.
UPDATE: First Published in January 2013
Have you read?
Tools to Have on Your Computer
- Evernote: This software helps you to organize your life – it’s a digital notebook. You can take notes and archive articles for future reference and sync them across all your devices. For instance, I have Evernote on my desktop, laptop and Galaxy Nexus phone and they are all synced so I can access information that I have archived – using Evernote – anytime, anywhere. See “The Evernote Bible by Brandon Collins, a Book Review.”
- Evernote Clipper: This is an extension/add-on from Evernote that you can add to your browser and clip the full article or sections of the article for reference later. You can clip information in your emails. This is excellent when you come across information that is relevant to your stakeholders.
- Print-Friendly: Another extension for your toolbar, print-friendly gives you a printer-friendly version of what you’re reading, and allows you to save a PDF version instead of printing the article.
- Spreed: This extension allows you to read articles faster by allowing you to set how many words per minute you would like to read, and the number of words at a time you would like to read. Read the section of the post on “How to Read a Book a Day for 30 days” that explains how to use Spreed.
Some Websites/Blogs/Newsletters to Bookmark
The above websites/blogs/newsletters have articles that will assist you in becoming a thought leader, and the tools I mention will allow you to process more of these articles in less time. If you come across an important idea and concept, Evernote allows you to make notes and save it for later. The pace at which information comes to you will not slow down, but the tools will assist you in managing the flow of it. And like anything in life, the more you practice, the better you become. Using these few tools will enable you to keep on top of industry trends in just minutes a day. Some of the tools I mention have an app version for your smart phone.
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