by Mandy Green, Busy Coach
Information abounds these days, and most coaches are feeling the brunt of not just paper overload but also digital overload. With the popularity of smart phones and apps, it has become even more confusing as to where and how to store, organize and find the information we want to keep and need to run our programs efficiently.
If you’re like most coaches, you have heard of Evernote, but aren’t sure what to do with it.
For years, I kept hearing how awesome Evernote was: how it could store everything you possibly needed, make it available everywhere, and how scores of people couldn’t live without it.
You might even have the app on your phone, but haven’t used it because you aren’t sure what to use it for. I have heard this from literally hundreds of coaches in the last year, and I was there too, until I heard Theresa Beekman’s talk about how she uses it as a College Coach at NCRC. Plus, I got sick of just looking at the app so decided to dig in.
Evernote has become a daily tool that I use to manage my coaching and personal life. As a coach, Evernote allows me to use notebooks, notebook stacks, optical character recognition in search, cloud storage, document management and so much more. I am going to cover some of my favorite features below.
I find myself clicking on that elephant nearly every day of my life and here is why you should too.
1. Access Everywhere – Evernote is available for iOS, Mac OS, Android, Windows, Chromebook and an available web interface. It also syncs with the cloud so that you can have access to anything, anywhere, anytime. Knowing that all of these notes are safely tucked away in the cloud where I can access whenever and wherever I need is a great feeling.
2. Travel – Anytime I travel, I create a new notebook in Evernote with the title of the trip. Then I just add my airline tickets to that notebook along with any hotel/rental car info, any addresses or other travel info. When I arrive, I have all of the information I need at my fingertips and don’t have to go searching through my phone for the reservation email or pull out the paperwork.
3. Recruiting – I put the schedule of games and players I need to watch in a notebook. I put my top 5 recruits at each position in a recruiting notebooks as well. When I send a top recruit an email, I Bcc myself. That adds the email to their notebook so I can keep track of what has been talked about. I also have all of our recruiting topics and the templates we use all saved in Evernote.
4. Pictures –Evernote has a fantastic feature that allows you to take a photo of recruiting receipts, team food receipts when you are on the road, funny team pictures, cool quotes … and puts it in the notebook you want. It is so much easier to find the pictures we need for highlight videos at the end of the year.
5. Dictation – with Evernote, you have the ability to audio dictate right to notes. I use this while driving to capture ideas and thoughts, while out at the field recruiting, or even when I am on a walk and think of something that I want to remember later.
6. Documents – I have all of my SOP’s and email templates for my program all save in notebooks. I also have our Master To-Do Lists saved in Evernote. You also can create shared notebooks, allowing you a repository for ideas, projects and anything else you want to share with your coaching staff.
7. Receipts – All coaches have to keep copies of receipts when we are out recruiting or traveling with our team. Evernote offers a streamlined solution to this ever growing challenge. Simply take a picture of the recruiting or team expense receipt and save it to the year notebook created (maybe titled something like 2017 Recruiting Expenses or Team Expenses). Voila! Less paper and less stress.
8. Notebooks – Evernote allows me to create an unlimited amount of notebooks to store my content. I can then organize notebooks into stacks if they are similar. I have a work stack that includes notebooks for recruiting, my coaching philosophy, standard operating procedures, soccer drills and strategies, and more. These layers of organization give structure and order to my content. which allows me to find things rapidly when I need them.
9. Security – Evernote has taken every measure to keep your notes, emails and documents safe. They employ every security measure possible to keep your stuff from being lost, stolen or hijacked.
10. Evernote Web Clipper- This has become one of my favorite features lately. When I am reading a good blog post, coaching tip or other online content that I want to have at my fingertips for later then I use the Web Clipper to cleanly clip it into Evernote for future reference. I can put any article that I want to read in a “read later” notebook and then I set that notebook for offline viewing so that I can read them while traveling with the team on the bus or while I am waiting to get in for an appointment. This is a really handy feature that Evernote has added.
Think of Evernote as a way to bring together all the loose ends lurking in your brain or on your desk. This is a fast, efficient and easy way to streamline multiple areas of your life and free up bandwidth in your mind so you can focus, rather than try to remember everything.
The More You Add, the More Useful Evernote Becomes
I hope that this encourages you to checkout Evernote and find it as useful as I have. I have really found a love of this app and use it to keep documents, organize files, write notes and plan out nearly everything in my life. Enjoy!
If you want more ideas of how you can use Evernote as a College Coach, check out the e-book that Theresa Beeckman wrote on how she uses it.