There are thousands of tools available to streamline your business, save you hours and increase your output but they are all flawed, imperfect and need you to adapt to their methodology. So how do you choose the best tool for your project? If you’re in any groups, you’ll hear recommendations, see training sessions on tools and read people passionately telling you that their particular tool can bring huge benefits. Do you choose software based on recommendations, based on cost, based on having access to training? From working with thousands of businesses, I think the major factor should be having a tool that fits your work style. It should fit within your budget, it should deliver value above the ongoing cost, it should be well-designed and as simple as possible but primarily, does it help you work calmly and have a clear picture of the past, present & future? I’ve worked with companies throwing thousands of dollars at Infusionsoft, happily using whiteboards, loving the checklists in Asana, running calendars in Sunsama, loving webforms in Podio, happily pulling out their paper diaries, tagging away in Simplenote, syncing social data with Nimble, selling products with Gumroad, selling subscription boxes via email and setting up payment pages with Moonclerk. They’re all making their lives easier and harder in some ways but they can see how the machine works, know how to adjust the parts and know that work is getting done. It’s all imperfect but at S&P we don’t judge people for stringing together the best tools they had available at the time. They’re busy and they’re getting stuff done. Then they get enough of a break one day to step back and see that they could do things a little cleaner, a little faster. It’s at this point that we step in, do a friendly audit and get them a project plan for building a stronger machine, with a clean windscreen & panoramic view, for the journey ahead.