Book review: Work Smarter with Evernote
Here is another recently read book on Evernote, Work Smarter with Evernote* by Alexandra Samuel. Again, this is a book I read in an effort to better unlock the secrets of Evernote. I was not disappointed.
Samuel writes about how to use Evernote to get ahead in life. How to focus on priorities and tasks key to personal and professional development. She focuses on three primary concepts:
- How to capture notes
- How to organize notes
- How to share notes
Throughout the book, Samuel provides detail examples of what to collect as well as why to collect it. She peppers the book with great tips that will save you time and energy as you organize and retrieve your notes.
Samuel stresses the important of developing a habit out of collecting notes whenever and wherever you are. She gives recommendations for creating a capture kit necessary to capture notes with different media and from different devices. As she gives examples for each capture device, she provides ideas for weaving Evernote into day-to-day operations.
At the beginning of this chapter, Samuel highlights the reason why she switched from paper notebooks to Evernote. It was basically the ability to find a note after she wrote it.
Evernote users passionately debate the relative virtues and uses of notebooks, stacks, and tags (Samuel, 2012, Kindle Location 265).
Samuel advocates the use of notebooks more than other authors whose books I have read. Personally, I am on the fence regarding notebooks. Right now, I can find all my notes using the search engine. However, Samuel makes some great arguments for their use. Again, she provides great detail for developing notebooks as well as what content to include. She includes useful instruction for task lists and activity logs. Additionally, she has a section on the use of stacks. Basically, she creates stacks to monitor primary areas of responsibility. Finally, Samuel provides great recommendations for using tags. These tips focus on the different categories of tags necessary to find information when you need it.
In this last section of the book, Samuel discusses the benefits of sharing notes. The benefits may be simply saving time or bettering the world with your professional collection of notes. Shared notes can be an effective method of collaborating with your team. With shared notebooks, team members can add to the notes or even edit the notes if allowed. Samuel provides useful ideas for the type of content to share with others.
By ensuring you capture everything, it helps you stop wasting time trying to find or recall that missing bit of information and instead focus on the places where you can add real value (Samuel, 2012, Kindle Location 557).
Finally, Samuel provides a very detailed 30-minute Evernote setup checklist to get you started.
This book is a quick read, yet packed with great ideas. It is another book on Evernote that I would recommend for your shelf, naturally, after you read it and put its ideas to use. How are you using Evernote? I would like to know.
Samuel, Alexandra (2012). Work Smarter with Evernote. Perseus Books Group. Kindle Edition.
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