Priority Matrix from @appfluence

I am a huge fan of productivity thoughts, tools and tactics and I firmly believe that no matter what business you are in, you can benefit from some intentional thinking in this area. All of us have more things to do than time to do it in and could benefit from a tool that would help us to organize our thoughts and tasks in a more systematic way.

I have been interested in this space since the early 90’s when the company I worked for at the time implemented the Franklin Planner as a means of increasing or enhancing productivity. Franklin Planner was a great way to start but organizing things according to their methodology was as cumbersome as the mass of binders that we had to carry around in order to manage our days.

Almost 20 years ago David Allen came on the scene with his radical ‘Getting Things Done’ approach to time and task management. His ‘mind like water’ approach is perfect for a time when to-do lists must be more flexible while recognizing the context of tasks as well. I have taken his approach to productivity to heart for almost half of my business life and thought of you who know me have heard me talk about it at least once, if not more! What I have never really found is a way to implement his thinking in a way that incorporates the best of software tools, the cloud and a platform independent approach that met my needs. Until now, that is. The tool I want to tell you about is called Priority Matrix from Appfluence.

Priority Matrix is platform independent, based in the cloud, freemium software that integrates with any email platform you’re using including Office 365, Outlook, G Suites and Gmail and it does it seamlessly and elegantly.

Here’s a brief overview:


Additional Examples

It’s even available for smartphones!

You can find many more of these examples on their YouTube channel here.

This solution hits all my high notes around thoughts, tools, tactics and timing in the productivity space and it meets all my criteria for an effective solution. It is simple, it is powerful, it is platform independent, it is freemium and therefore it is effective. If you’d like to talk about how this applies to you, please use the contact form below!

Supplemental articles

My interview with David Allen…

These thoughts were assembled with care for the important people in my life. If you’re getting this link, it’s because you and your productivity and happiness are very important to me! I hope it benefits you…

The Basics of Search Engine Marketing for Small Business Owners

This is the start of a series on Search Engine Marketing for small business owners.

“Search engine marketing (SEM) is a form of Internet marketing that involves the promotion of websites by increasing their visibility in search engine results pages (SERPs) primarily through paid advertising.[1] SEM may incorporate search engine optimization (SEO), which adjusts or rewrites website content and site architecture to achieve a higher ranking in search engine results pages to enhance pay per click (PPC) listings.[2]


SEO takes more time than money and PPC takes more money than time. Each business owner must decide which asset — time or money — is more valuable to them and decide the appropriate mix. SEM takes longer to ‘kick in’ but longer to taper off while PPC starts immediately when you start paying and stops immediately when you stop paying.

Time and money for small business owners

If you think of SEO and PPC as an investment portfolio, this classic strategy may apply: “Here is an imperfect but workable rule of thumb: If you are investing mainly for retirement, you should “own your age” in bonds. So for example, a 30-year-old would have 30% of her portfolio in bonds, and 70% in stocks.” The lesson I extract? Have more SEO than PPC.

My standard advice to small business owners is to focus on SEO which tends to work better over time and perhaps add a little PPC to get a campaign going until SEO starts to kick in. If that makes sense to you as a small business owner, the single most important thing to do is establish a Google My Business entry for your location.

Quick, flashy marketing overview

If you still need help, please use the contact form below to ask questions or connect.

Supplemental reading

I am Enough by Fred Johnson @ #TEDxUWGreenBay

Technology has shattered the traditional pillars of leadership: position, competence, and information. Trust, the new foundation of leadership excellence requires authenticity, transparency, and vulnerability. Today’s leader must choose the path of self-discovery, self-belief, and a commitment to love oneself first as the prerequisite for leading others well. Fred Johnson is the Chief Executive Officer and Founder of InitiativeOne. He has created and implemented Leadership Transformation processes that accelerate positive culture change by helping leaders become more authentic, courageous, open and human than ever before. He is passionate about elevating leaders and exponentially impacting the leadership culture of an organization. This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at



Want to get found on Google? Focus on Google+!

English: Google Logo officially released on Ma...

Want to get found on Google? As an adjunct professor for Search Engine Marketing and Social Media instructor at Northeastern Wisconsin Technical College and a personal digital coach in the same space, I spend a lot of time helping people get found in Google’s ‘Zero Moment of Truth‘ — the ‘space’ where people are googling their options before making a buying decision. I’ve been thinking about the importance of stepping up in Google+ for quite some time and Rand Fishkin’s post on Friday really got me thinking. Here’s a collection of thoughts on the topic…

Using Google+ to Appear in the Top Results Every Time

Rand Fishkin has an interesting post on The Moz Blog this morning that you might be interested in if you care about getting found in search:

Many marketers are wondering about the effects of Google+ on search results, and for anyone with a Google+ profile, a few personalized searches make those effects quite apparent. In today’s Whiteboard Friday, Marshall Lee the vampire king (don’t be afraid, it’s just Rand) explains how having the right circlers on Google+ can lead to top-ranked results for even the broadest of queries in their SERPs.

Go to the source for an interesting video on the topic: Using Google+ to Appear in the Top Results Every Time – Whiteboard Friday – Moz

Caution; shifting paradigms…

The new me…

Some of you in other parts of the country [or the world for that matter], who have school-aged children, may be shocked to know that this is the first day of school in Algoma, Wisconsin. To be honest, I don’t know if the first day of school is more difficult on parents or children. For me, the start of school means an end to my flexible summer routine and I must now live on a ‘school schedule’ for the foreseeable future so for me, I think it’s harder on me than the kids…

This is a period of shifting paradigms in my life; I am taking on new responsibilities and deciding which old ones that should hold onto. For example, next week I will teach my first class as an adjunct professor at Northeast Wisconsin Technical College. It will be the first time since graduate school that I have taught a class of predominantly college-aged students and I’m willing to bet that some things have changed about teaching at that level in a generation. Even though I have taught on and off over the past 30 years and have been teaching at NWTC at the continuing education level I am looking forward to entering this new phase of my career. I think the dirty little secret about teaching is that if done correctly, the teacher is the one who learns the most. I look forward to teaching at this level; may I mindful. May I be at peace. May I be the best version of my Self so that I can give my students the things they need to draw from my class…

I came across a quote a few weeks ago reading Eckhart Tolle‘s book “The Power of Now”. He says:

“Instead of quoting the Buddha, be the Buddha, be “the awakened one,” which is what the word Buddha means.” 1

This quote will not let me alone! I think about it often throughout the day. Why do I settle for quoting other people’s thoughts on the Internet when I really should be sharing my own? Over the weekend I had a lovely exchange with a lovely blogger named Melanie about how she needed to write her own book and yet for the past two years, I have been threatening to write a book of my own. Why is it that I encourage other people to do what I do not have the courage or discipline to do myself? Is it the imposter syndrome? Perhaps, but most likely it is a failure to discipline myself to do the work that real writing requires…

The great philosopher Wally of the Dilbert cartoon strip shares this perspective:

I’m going to start by not being a ‘social media Wally’, transporting huge quantities of quotes from my RSS reader to my blog and social media. Instead, I need to document the things I am thinking and use the tools I have to get a share of voice, which may get me a share of mind and may result in a share of market. Henceforth, I’ll be focusing on what thought leader Nilofer Merchant calls my ‘onlyness‘ and work on documenting the insights the Uni-verse has shared with me before the Uni-verse decides to share them with someone more worthy.

I almost forgot to share this; I have a friend named Tim who sends me witty things via email. In the past, many of them ended up posted to my blog and I thank him for making the contribution. Last week I told him ‘you need a blog’. His response? “Blogs are for something you write not regurgitated other people materials.” Out of the mouths of babes! The Uni-verse can stop now with the not so subtle hints. I GET IT ALREADY!!!

I’m asking you to hold me accountable as I attempt to ‘be the Buddha’. I won’t be curating as much content as I have in the past that everything I share online will end up here and I encourage you to subscribe to my updates if you would like. In the meantime however I’ll be focusing on finishing my book “Zen and the Art of Thought Leadership” which is due by the end of September…

1 Tolle, Eckhart (2010-10-06). The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment (Kindle Locations 695-696). New World Library. Kindle Edition.