This is my riff on Lifehacker’s This Is How I Work Series.
Location: Westerville, Ohio
Current computer: Macbook Pro 15 w/Retina Display (backup computer MacBook Air 11)
Current mobile device(s): Samsung Note 3 and iPhone 5s
What apps/software/tools can’t you live without?
For my money, Evernote is the indispensable app. I use Evernote for taking notes, for clipping articles, and for scanning every document that enters my life. I just bought the Evernote ScanSnap scanner from Evernote’s new marketplace.
I love 37 Signals, and I use Highrise for my customer relationship manager and Basecamp for projects. Highrise is an untraditional customer relationship manager or sales force automation. It’s pretty simple, and it isn’t for managing a pipeline, but it works for me. Basecamp is perfect! I love sharing projects with my team and my clients.
I like Dropbox, but I pay for Box.com. Box is a professional grade version of online storage. I sync a number of files across my computers, and I share a number of folders with my team and my clients.
I just switched from Mail.app to Airmail. It’s a super-slick email application with a killer user interface. Mail.app and Gmail just don’t play nicely together anymore, so I had to find something that let’s me replicate the Mail Act-On functionality, particularly archiving email to certain tags with a keystroke.
I also use 1Password as a password manager (on everything but the Note 3). I am really trying hard to use complex passwords and two-factor authentication wherever I can.
What’s your workspace like?
I have a Geekdesk with two 27-inch Apple Thunderbolt displays. I like to stand when I work on the telephone, and I like to sit down to write. My office is my library, and I am surrounded by floor to ceiling bookshelves (I am never more comfortable than when I am surrounded by books and coffee).
What’s your best time-saving shortcut/life hack?
Capture everything you need to do in a trusted system (Thank you, David Allen). Hire a personal assistant (Thank you, Michael Hyatt). Outsource the work for which you are not the primary value creator (Inspired by Gerhard Gschwandtner).
For my money, getting up before 5:00 AM and working until 7:00 AM on creative, psychic-RAM-draining tasks is the ultimate key to productivity.
What everyday thing are you better than everyone else?
I don’t know that I am better than anyone else at any everyday thing. But I can read for hours and hours.
What’s your favorite to-do list manager?
I love Omnifocus, but since I switched to an Android phone, I had to find something else (or at least I thought I did). I am currently using 2Do. It’s not as powerful, clean, or flexible as Omnifocus, but it’s the best-in-class if you need to manage tasks across platforms. Airmail’s newest update allows you to share emails striaght to 2Do, which helps tremendously.
What do you listen to while you work?
Nothing. At 4:30 AM, I am surrounded by and enveloped in my thoughts.
What are you currently reading?
Tilt: Shifting Your Strategy from Products to Customers (the most important book of 2013) by Niraj Dawar and The Cave and the Light: Plato Versus Aristotle and the Struggle for the Soul of Western Civilization.
What’s your sleep routine like?
In bed and asleep at 10:00 PM (I normally fall asleep in seconds), up at 4:30 AM (except on weekends, then usually up by 5:45 AM).
Fill in the blank: I’d love to see ___________ answer these same questions?
He’s not quite as tech-nerdy as I am, but he’s running a close second: Charlie Green (who I am hoping will write his own response and name someone else).
What’s the best advice you’re ever received?
It’s a tough question. Let’s start with “Shut up. It isn’t about you.” Then maybe, “Stop worrying about politics and just make enough money to outrun the bastards.”