Tools we love, and tools we want to exist

The other day we added a new “Tools” page to this site – a list of all the resources and services we use regularly and would struggle without. But we want more…

keys

When a number of readers emailed us to say “Where’s your tools page gone???”, our reply was “INTERestiiiing… we, erm, don’t know!” It literally disappeared from this site and we have no idea how to get it back again. Still, it was a good time to create an up-to-date list of everything we’re using right now, and remind ourselves just how grateful we are that they all exist.

For example…

Tools we love

Without TorGuard, we’d risk our data every time we used a public wifi network. But more importantly, we wouldn’t be able to watch The Great British Bake Off on BBC iPlayer when abroad.

Without Gravity Forms, we wouldn’t be able to create nifty, snazzy forms with conditional logic – like this (try it out – it’s really fun!).

We also wouldn’t be able to automatically generate PDFs from a form input, which is something we do in our business, Yellow Lettings.

Without TransferWise, we’d get charged an arm and a leg every time an overseas client paid us.

Without Trello, our lives would be a completely disorganised mess and one of us would probably have murdered the other one.

And without WP Engine and/or Bluehost, we’d… actually we’d probably be just fine. (Read more about why here.)

Visit the “Tools” page

But we’re greedy, and we want more tools! Below are just a couple of things that we’d love to see exist.

Tools we want to exist (please)

“Key exchange stores” for Airbnb hosts and guests

Here are a couple of scenarios to prove why this service is needed:

1: There are many apartments around the world where you need a key to get inside the main building – which renders useless the whole idea of affixing a key box to the front door of the apartment. (Rarely will you be allowed to affix a key box to the outside of the actual building.) So in order for a new guest to gain entry, someone has to be there to meet them and hand over the keys.

2: OR if no one can be there to meet the new guest, the keys are left in an envelope at a local store. (In New York it often seems to be a laundromat.) It’s not the safest way to do things, and mistakes/misunderstandings are likely to occur: there have been many times when the owner or owner’s kid has no clue what we’re talking about. “What do you mean keys? We don’t have people’s keys here. What was that dad? Oh, we do! Cool, let me look… oh yes, here’s the envelope. But it’s empty. Sorrrrry! I guess someone else already took ’em.”

The dream solution would be “key lockers” in major cities, like the Amazon Lockers they have in the US and UK. But that’s going to take a lot of time and money.

So instead, why not firm up and professionalise the method that so many people are using already: enable local stores to become a “key exchange”. They can be provided with software to manage the check-in and check-out process of keys, as well as a safe for holding the keys.

What’s in it for the “key exchange store”? Footfall. It’s the same reason why so many stores in the UK have signed up for the Collect Plus service (where Amazon customers can go into a store to collect their parcel rather than have it delivered to their home).

We did some digging and discovered that this service already kind of exists, but it’s been really slow to get off the ground, and it’s only available in a couple of cities.

We don’t want to wait any longer! And if you want to create this sort of service, we’d be your first customers!

All-encompassing mastermind software

We’re big fans of masterminds. But masterminds are a faff: you have to cobble together so many different pieces of scheduling, timing, note-taking, communication and recording tools to make them happen. And you also have to find the right people with whom to form a mastermind group (which is difficult unless you’re already in some sort of online community or forum).

So here’s what we’d like to exist: software for forming and managing mastermind groups.

  • People could pay a monthly subscription, and there could be different levels of subscription depending on how many masterminds they’re involved in.
  • There’d be a dashboard per mastermind, and all group members would have access to it.
  • Video chat would be automatically recorded, and downloadable afterwards.
  • It’d be easy to schedule the sessions, and then an easy way to reschedule if certain people can’t make a certain time one week.
  • Reminders would be set out in advance.
  • There’d be a timer for use during the mastermind.
  • People could take notes during the call, and then share those notes with other members of the group.
  • Any “chat” notes (where members might share URLs they’re talking about, for example) would automatically be saved.
  • There’d be a marketplace for people to start up and join masterminds.

What other tools would you like to see?

We have so many other things that we want to exist in the world, but we’ll save them for another day! In the meantime, what sort of tools would you like to exist?

Let me know in the comments!