Everyone's always hawking the latest in productivity fixes -- from new tools to tips on how to "hack" your way to a more productive work day. But when they begin to be detrimental rather than beneficial, it's time to re-evaluate whether it's the right system for you. Keep in mind that there's no one-size-fits-all solution here.
Eight entrepreneurs from Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) share the productivity systems they'll be eliminating, and discuss why they've no longer proven useful in their business.
While some believe that getting things done means juggling several responsibilities at once, it turns out that focusing on one project at a time is more beneficial. I still find that I multi-task from time to time, but when it's really time to perform, you have to just focus on one thing.--Kevin Henrikson, Outlook iOS & Android @ Microsoft
We were using Trello for task and project management, but rapidly found that it lacked many components that we needed to keep various teams organized and on-task. We migrated from Trello to a collaborative mindmap board using task management features, as it gave us the same ability to move tasks around quickly while providing a greater overview of the big picture of each team.--Marcela DeVivo, Homeselfe
3. Gmail's email interface.
I don't find Gmail's feature for important emails useful. In fact, the Gmail interface itself is counterproductive. Gmail's main flaw is that users cannot view the content of email messages and the list of emails in the inbox in one window. I use Airmail, a Mac application, to sort email instead. I move through my inbox much more quickly using Airmail, without having to click on each message.--Brandon Dempsey, goBRANDgo!
I used to use Evernote to keep track of my daily tasks, but I kept running into issues syncing my mobile and desktop versions. Part of the reason I downloaded the app was the appeal of being able to write something on my desktop and access it on my mobile while on the go, and vice versa. Without that working seamlessly, it has lost its appeal.--Stanley Meytin, True Film Production
5. Microsoft Office programs.
We don't find as much daily, real-time value in the traditional Office suite as we do now with the modern features of Google Drive. My team can work together on projects in real time, making collaborations extremely efficient. Plus, Google Drive saves immediately to the cloud and stores living documents, so we never risk losing changes again. Gone are the days of hearing, "It didn't save!"--Darius Fisher, Status Labs
I have a company full of Millennials so you'd think Slack would be the tool of our dreams. Not only did it not replace our beloved Yammer, it was universally hated by every single person that works here. I feel like I live on an alien planet when people talk about how amazing it is. We found it hard to use, and instead opted for the more intrusive -- but more structured -- Bitrix24.--Maren Hogan, Red Branch Media
7. Old-school to-do lists.
The oldest and most popular way people organize to-do activities is by simply writing them down in list form. But when we have an idea or want to accomplish something, we grab anything we can find to write it down. This could be a napkin, the back of an envelope or a random piece of paper. The problem is the list approach thus leads to inconsistency.--Obinna Ekezie, Wakanow.com
8. Inbox zero.
Inbox zero sounds like a great idea, but keeping your inbox empty can be a huge distraction on its own. You end up creating lots of folders, dismissing important emails and prioritizing "inbox zero" over real work. All of this can create a false sense of security and accomplishment. There are lots of great concepts in achieving inbox zero, but you shouldn't go crazy over it.--Andrew Saladino, Kitchen Cabinet Kings