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Apr 11

Stop Using Emails and Take Action

Take just a minute to think about it: of the last 10 emails you received, how many helped you to complete a project? Not a lot right…

A recent study from the McKinsey Institute showed that the average worker spends 28 hrs per week looking for information to help get the job done, including more that 8 hrs per week just looking through old emails thread. We could all use that extra time.

In an effort to reduce the noise of emails you receive and to keep the conversation in the right place, you can use Producteev to turn talk into action items within the tasks and notes. Not only you can discuss and store information with your action items, you can also collaborate on documents and attach any type of files!

Have a Producteev week!

Mar 18

6 Tips for a Better Sales Management with Producteev

From the classic notepad and paper client folders to professional CRM software, there are many ways you can manage your sales process and leads. Simplify your process with Producteev. Whether you are using regular or Pro workspaces, you can use Producteev to better organize your sales team. Here are six best practices we have heard from customers when using Producteev as a sales management tool.

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  1. Make clients tasks. Just like a task, a client may be active or “done.” Each client should be represented by a task.
  2. Use Labels to identify the stage of the funnel of the contact. The labels act as step-indicators for prospects. You can easily create a label for each stage, and change it when something changes with the contact.
  3. Remember to assign the responsible party! Assign the task to the sales representative. This contact then becomes a member of that person’s portfolio.
  4. Utilize Deadlines. Timing matters when you’re trying to convert a prospect.
  5. Don’t count to much on your memory, use the notes!
  6. Use Stars to indicate size or value. There’s always a potential value behind a prospect. The stars help you identify which one is the most important in a blink of an eye.

With a little extra setup, you can optimize your tool through creating macros. For example, one of our customers combined the power of the Mail2Task with a rudimentary contact HTML form on their website to automatically turn emails into potential leads… Stay tuned: this tip will be the subject of a future blog post.

Mar 07

Vines + Producteev = the perfect mix for a great vintage

With a part of the Producteev team born and raised in France and our new headquarters located in California, we have two good reasons to be like wine. When we heard that a little wine producer from the Napa Valley uses Producteev to monitor his vines and sell his bottles, we could not pas up the opportunity to discuss our two passions: wine and productivity!

Hello Greg Scheinfeld, could you tell us a little more about your company?

Uproot Wines is a small producer of high quality wines in the Napa Valley. We are currently making a Sauvignon Blanc and a Cabernet Sauvignon from the Napa Valley, as well as a Grenache Blanc and Grenache from the Central Coast. All four wines are produced and bottled in Napa.

One of the more interesting things about our company is that we have designed a front label that has what we call a tasting color palette. This means that the color bars on the label correspond to how strong the wine is. We started our company about a year and a half ago and are growing.

What is your role at Uproot Wines?

As the founder of Uproot Wines, my role includes everything from paying the bills to selling the wine. The team is still quite small: Jay (my associate), his two assistants, and myself. Jay and I work closely on the phone and through Producteev to keep track of the different tasks that need to be done. Email, texts, and phone calls can only be so helpful. The Producteev dashboard has everything in the pipelines clearly laid out and is easy to keep updated.

How do you use Producteev?

Most of my work is done through the desktop application. I hardly use the website dashboard since the app is suited perfectly for what we need at Uproot. I actually think we under utilize the potential of the product. As Uproot grows, we will have the opportunity to utilize Producteev further.

What feature do you use the most?

We primarily use the deadline and the multi-channel notification features. We also use notes and the task list helps us to keep a running list of all the things in the pipeline that we need to accomplish. It also helps keep us stay accountable.

How did you manage your tasks before Producteev?

Managing our company has mostly been done through email and phone calls. It was difficult because employees lived in separate time zones. Thus far, Producteev has really helped us to stay on track.

Feb 28

Help us to learn to Producteev how to speak your language

When is the best time to learn new languages for a child? A hotly debated issue. The choice is ultimately up to the parents. Here at Producteev, we discussed the future of our baby task manager and concluded that it is time to say yes to one of the biggest request from our users!

Based on your requests, we would love to make Producteev available in the following languages. If you are fluent in any of the following languages, we want to hear from you! And if you speak a language that is not listed below (lolcats anyone?) and want to help us to translate Producteev, please contact us too!

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How to help Producteev to speak your language?

The answer is pretty simple, contact us! Tweet, Facebook, email, comment on this blog post, telegraph…Regardless of how you communicate, please include your email address so we can get back to you. Bruno (bc@producteev.com) will be fully dedicated to our international helpers over the coming weeks, let us know that you’re alive and he will get back to you.

So, what’s in it for you (besides our gratitude)? You will enjoy early access to Producteev 4, free PRO subscriptions, your name on our website, and our eternal gratitude (which is worth its weight in gold image).

Thank you for your support over the last 4 years!

Feb 25

Turn your emails into action!

Whether you use Outlook or a trendy mail client like Sparrow or directly Gmail, the statement holds true: emails are overwhelming. It results in a critical loss of productivity for employees and managers alike. What would happen if you turn this old tool into the most actionable piece of work? A task. Give it a try by starting to forward your actionable emails to task@producteev.com. This will help you will keep the conversation with your team in the right place, out of your email inbox.

 

From an email to a task, in a single forward

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If you want to create a new task from scratch or to transform an existing email into a task the process is always the same: you send an email to task@producteev.com. You can send from your main address (the one you used to register on Producteev) and from any email address you own, as long as you register those in your account’s settings.

By default the title of your email will become the title of your task. Producteev will help you to go further into the action, by using the Natural Language Processing in the subject field you’re able to create a deadline and name the person who is responsible.

The actionable conversation

 

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Once you have set the title of your future task and its assets, it’s time to edit your first note. The body of your email will be considered as the first note, including the attachments (remember all you can do with your docs on Producteev?). The icing on the cake is that you can also mention members of your team using the @ in the body of your email so they will be added as followers to the new task, and notified that they have a role to play! Now you only need to move the conversation in the right place and to let your collaborators move forward.

Turn the good emails into actionable tasks to create a better way to communicate and get things done.

Feb 14

They use Producteev to sublimate their commercials

M /studio is one of the most well known post-production facilities in Chile and a reference for commercials in the Latin American World. When we heard that they use Producteev to manage their projects, we couldn’t resist asking a few questions. 

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Hòlà compañeros, tell us a little you and your company.

My name is Fernando and I’m partner and general manager of M /studio, a video post production company. We mainly do advertising and we work with some prestigious clients like Coca-Cola, L’Oréal, Colgate, Palmolive… I run the company on a daily basis when Guayi Mas our art director, is on the field trying to create spectacular effects for our client’s commercials.

 

How does Producteev help you to get those projects done? How do you use it on a daily basis?

We use Producteev to coordinate the process of post-production. Since the plans change every minute we need to keep everyone updated and to share information in real-time. A client changed his mind, a last minute revision… They’re always unexpected challenges in this business and Producteev has been really good to keep everyone updated with what they have to do in order to make the commercial great and the customer happier.

Give us your secret, what does your Producteev board looks like?

We use Producteev in a very special way. We only have a few projects running in the meantime and each project is short (5 days on average) and intense. So we use a common workspace for all the employees where we represent each client as a label and each project as task. Then, we use the notes to keep everyone updated on the next steps to follow. Using the notes allows us to send a notification by email to each employee as soon as something is moving on the project!

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What feature do you use most in Producteev?

We mainly use the web app since we are always in the studio and we stay behind our computers for days when it is time to finish big projects. The feature we use the most is definitely the emails and the notifications by this channel.

 

How did you manage your tasks before you use Producteev?

I just put everything I could think about on a calendar or on my agenda and then I had to manually send emails to everyone to notify them. Finally, each employee had to recreate their own task-list on a piece of paper. Now with Producteev I can share all the information with the entire company, which is much more powerful and productive. I don’t have any doubt on the quality of our work, but this kind of tool helps us to be more organized and efficient.

 

Thank you for your time and stay Producteev!

Feb 06

How to Deal with Privacy in Producteev

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The idea driving innovation at Producteev is that we break all the barriers between your tasks and your team. However, we understand that there is the need for secrecy. That’s why we offer a couple of options that could even help 007 to save the world, in a total privacy.

 

To lock or unlock your workspace? It’s all about your collaboration philosophy 

The first privacy setting we provide in Producteev is the ability to lock or unlock your workspaces. An unlocked workspace is the most open collaboration mode you can imagine: every user on your workspace can see, create and edit any task (except the hidden ones as we’ll see later). A perfect mode for small and highly collaborative teams. If your team is a little bigger and every user has a well-defined role you may find the locked mode useful. The locked mode only allows three people to edit a task: the creator of the task, the assignee, and the workspace administrator.

To access this setting you can use the network drop down menu on the top of your main screen (as shown on the screenshot below).

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Only the chosen ones can know about the existence of a private task

When you work on a highly sensitive project, you want to have control over who can see the tasks. This is exactly why we designed the private tasks. Every time you open the details panel of a task, you can set the privacy settings by clicking on the lock followed by the words “All workspace member.” One click on this button and you can select who has the right to see the task, and who will never be aware of its existence. This is an easy way to keep your plan to take the control of the world totally secret.

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Stay productive!

Jan 30

Yes, Producteev can help to find oil & gas

In the middle of a desert or on the north pole, the daily-job of Denis and his coworkers is to find oil & gas. When we found out that they use Producteev to manage these enormous projects, we definitely wanted to know more.

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Hello Denis, tell us about you and your company.

I unfortunately can’t disclose all the details but we are a subsidiary of a Russian major oil & gas company operating on an exploration in Middle East: we’re looking for oil and maybe gas. We have lots of external stakeholders, such as a local government, Ministry of Natural Resources, our Parent Company, shareholders, partners, environmental organizations, etc. All of them interact with us on daily basis and we need to keep track of all incoming requests.

 

What are the roles of you and your team?

I’m the Finance Manager of the project. I supervise all finance operations, including accounting, budgeting, new business opportunities, etc. Our finance and commercial team is comprised of eight people including myself. We have three locations: Russia, the Netherlands, and Middle East. We’re lucky we have all people in our team very familiar with web-technologies, so implementing Producteev was easy.

 

How can Producteev help you?

We have a Business Analyst in our team, who manages all agendas and task tracking by working within Producteev. The Business Analyst encourages everyone to complete tasks, post notes explaining what has been done, checks late tasks, records tasks, and introduces new people on the project team (besides finance - geologists, IT, legal, HR) to Producteev. I personally conduct training sessions explaining to newcomers how to work with Producteev and I use it to post some simple tasks and notes on the go, which I populate with more detail when I’m at my desk.

 

What feature do you use most in Producteev?

I use activity reports and natural language task creation. Some of our colleagues find it convenient to work with emails to report on tasks and attach notes, while others like apps on Mac, iPhone, and Android.

 

How did you manage your tasks before you used Producteev?

Simple notebooks and basic Microsoft Outlook to-do lists, then Excel spreadsheet with columns: Task, Responsible, Planned Start Date, Actual Finish Date… But synchronizing everyone and making online modifications has been a problem. Then I saw Producteev online and showed it to my boss and our Business Analyst. The major driver for switch was the cross-platform availability. My boss signed off on using Producteev when he saw the notifications list on his Galaxy Note’s big screen.

 

At the end of the day are you a “my list is empty” person or more of an “okay, now I have to reschedule all those tasks for tomorrow” person?

I used to be a “have to clear out all inbox before end of day” person, but as the business’ pace increases – some tasks will span over more than one day and you just have to work with it with best tool you have available, and not clutter your head with many small things.

 

Thank you Denis and good luck with this giant project!

Jan 22

When Producteev meets a crocodile, it’s all win for your docs

A few moths ago, Producteev adopted the best and nicest crocodile in the world: the Crocodoc. Why is this one so sweet? He is 100% document-ivorous: his only role is to let you share and annotate your documents in Producteev. No more searching through emails to find the most recent version of a document. Everything is stored with your tasks and projects so you can work with everyone on your team.

There is no cap on the number of documents or who can upload documents in Producteev. To upload a document, you simply go to any of your tasks and upload it as a Note. You are able to upload and share any type of file. However, only the following types will open up the golden gates of document collaboration: .DOC(x), .XLS(x), .PPT(x), and .PDF.

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Once it’s uploaded, everyone who can see the task has the ability to download or annotate the document. To do so, just click on “preview and annotate” and the document editor will load. There are a world of possibilities: zoom-in, zoom-out, highlight, and annotate. And if you feel a little claustrophobic, don’t forget to click on “fullscreen.”

Next time you will see this Crocodile in Producteev, we bet you will not react like that: 

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Stay productive,

Bruno

Dec 28

Why you should have a talk with the Producteev Chat Bot !

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The talking-robots are often scary, but they’re not always like that! Look at R2-D2 : without him, Skywalker wouldn’t be alive after the 1st Star Wars…

If you adopt it, the Producteev chat robot will be your very own productivty assistant. He will take care of your tasks all day-long. Either you want to be notified when a task is due or create a new task, directly on and from your desktop.


1/ Add the Bot as friend

To add the bot to your contact list, you first need to activate the feature in your Producteev account. To do so, go to this page, click on the Google Chat button and enter your Google account or Jabber address.

Then you only need to accept the invitation from the Bot directly in your GMail account, or in your Jabber Client if you already have one.

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2/ Connect your messaging account to your favorite client

iMessage, trillian, Adium… The choice is all yours. All you need to do is to open your client, and to enter your credentials in the application’s preferences.

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3 / Discuss with the bot

You’re all set! Now you’ll receive a message directly to your desktop every time you have a notification or a task is due. To set up wich alerts you want to receive or not, go to this page

To create a new task using our bot, simply talk to it, it understands Natural Language Processing. For example, you can write: “@BC Call the banker tomorrow #Finance” to assign “call the banker” to Bruno C., due tomorrow with the label Finance.

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Thanks for your support and stay Producteev!

Bruno