4 Tools I’m Using to Save Time and Grow My Business in 2018

In my previous post, I talked about what I’m leaving behind in 2017. A lot of the lessons I learned heavily impacted where I put my money in 2018, and what I considered to be a worthwhile ROI.

My criteria for where I spent my money was simple: Will it help me save time or grow my business?

When it comes to saving time, this would be an expense that would allow me to take back my time and focus it either in or on my business in ways that would generate more income for me.

When it comes to growing my business, I see this as something where I won’t necessarily see immediate gains, but can use to project growth in the future.

To start, here my favourite tools that save time and help me automate or polish elements of my business:


Acuity Scheduling – Not only does this tool help automate booking discovery calls and schedule ongoing client communications, it can be used as a payment tool as well for one-off strategy calls. The time I save from having to coordinate schedules is well worth the $10 a month

Dubsado  – This tool is a dream and the thing that pains me the most is I’m not even using it to its full potential. From managing contracts, intake forms to tracking time, I can easily manage my clients and my business from this one tool. In 2018, I plan to take better advantage of Dubsado’s workflow to enhance my client experience.

ConvertKit  – After starting out with Drip, I recently switched to ConvertKit which I am loving so far. With an easy to use interface and fantastic segmentation options, I’m excited to get more utility out of ConverKit in 2018 as putting more energy and attention into my weekly newsletter is a top priority!

Adobe Creative Suite – I’ll be honest, I’ve never used Canva and likely never will because my love for the Adobe Creative Suite runs so deep. I’ve been using an Adobe tool of sorts since I first dabbled in graphic design when I was 15 and while it’s not my core focus, Photoshop, InDesign, Illustrator, Premiere, After Effects and more have been used consistently in my business, for both my work and to jazz up things for clients. $50 a month for a Creative subscription may be steep (especially as I’ve been hiring incredible people to help me with my graphic design), I still use one or more of these tools daily in my business. With several new offerings in the works for 2018, Adobe Creative Suite will no doubt help add some polish to my marketing materials.

Next week, I’ll be back with the bigger investments I’m making. For 2018, I’m choosing to invest in people versus courses, and can’t wait to share some of the incredible people I’m working with to drive my business forward.

The Busy Entrepreneur’s Guide to Learning Strategically

As an entrepreneur, you often spend a significant portion of your day learning by consuming content. For a lot of us, you learn as you go and you’re constantly seeking out new resources because your business and the state of your industry is always evolving.

Whether it’s a business blog, a podcast, a community you’re part of or a new course, you consume with the intention of applying your learnings to your business. But what happens with all that information? It’s impossible to apply every tidbit you learn to growing your business (…unless you’re a robot), and let’s be honest for a second here: We’ve all spent some time reading work-relevant blogs or magazines to put off an undesirable task on our to do list.

If your creative business is getting the way of achieving balance in your life, you need a learning strategy. Don’t worry, this is easy! It’s a mindset shift about content consumption that streamlines what you learn and helps you identify actionable ways to improve your business.

  1. Block off an hour a day for learning. This ensures you’re staying up to date on trends in your space but limits the time spent so it doesn’t spill over into work time. Put on a podcast, catch up on your blogs or do a module in an e-course you’re taking. It all counts.  You can even split this window up, but it’s important to schedule it into your day.
  2. Block off 15-30 minutes a day for doing. This is key. You’re not just making a list of something to do eventually – in order to benefit from what you’ve learned and limit information overload, you need to take one or two insights that you’ve picked up and apply it to your business that day.
  3. Revisit your goals. Before you implement your learnings, you want to make sure they support your business goals. Think of 3-5 goals you’re reaching for with your business. Take some of the ideas you want to implement and compare them to your goals. Do they support your goals? Will they help you get closer to achieving them? If you can’t find link, it may not be the best use of your time. Remember, if you want balance in your life, you need to be strategic about where you spend it in your business.
  4.  Do. Break it down into smaller tasks if you need to. The only way you’ll know if something works for your business is if you do it. Get into the habit of optimizing your business a little every day, so you don’t fall behind and have more work to do down the road.

Download the very same worksheet I use to action what I learn on a daily basis!

If you’re thinking that’s a lot of time to spend, I encourage you to give it a try for one week. I suspect one of two things will happen: 1) You’ll spend more time getting things done and less time scrolling through blogs and social media or 2) You’ll find yourself inspired by new ideas and see new potentials for growth in your biz.


I’d love to know what you think of this approach! Tell me in the comments below or send me a note!