It’s a manager’s job to demand more of their team and create the environment to inspire results – a fine line to tread. Not many succeed whether that’s to personal failures to motivate or disregard for the infrastructure available to their employees.
What we mean by that is what tools are available to employees to manage their work. Especially important is how they receive and process information. On that point, we maintain RSS is the most important tool for any office team.
What is RSS?
Have heard RSS float around as a term, but not sure what it is?
We’ll make it simple. RSS (Really Simple Syndication) is a protocol for content distribution and syndication available on a site as an RSS feed. The feed is an online file with data on every piece of content published on a site. Each post or article is reduced to simple details such as author, date of publication, link, summary or in most cases the full-text of the content, and generated in the file. Once updated, the RSS feed will add the newest publication at the top then followed by preceding posts based on their publication date.
End users subscribe to RSS feeds in an RSS feed reader in order to keep up with blogs and news publications in real time and in one place.
Why should your team use it?
RSS embraces the adage ‘work smarter, not harder’ through its filtration and automation. We will get into detail on these points later on, but the general idea is this – RSS readers have evolved well beyond passive tools for reading.
They’ve stepped into the category of productivity tools with wide application for marketers and journalists, researchers and even students. Offices stand to gain much in streamlining their overall workflow through the inclusion of RSS readers as means to reduce time spent inefficiently online, while delivering the same results.
How can it help your team become more productive?
Strong oversight over the media landscape as it pertains to your operations opens up opportunities on how to grow your business beyond encouraging individual performance. Industries have grown a lot more competitive and swift reaction separates winners from losers. RSS feed readers keep you at the forefront of news in your industry, and can also be fine-tuned to increase cooperation between team members.
This though depends on the social functions of the RSS feed reader. Most can be integrated with messaging and note taking applications, though there are those with specific features. Inoreader is a fine selection because of its collaborative Teams feature.
They receive updates about topics they care about
RSS readers structure content and value discovery. Highlighting, tags, folders and filters are front and center in the current generation of RSS readers as a means to give end users full control and usability. Perfect for research and excellent for news aficionados, who want to follow a story as it develops.
The opportunity to follow a specific topic turns RSS readers into a welcome, intuitive tool to make one’s way through every industry’s press to scan for particular stories. Discovery is highly valued and developed at many leading readers and Inoreader has given end users excellent user-generated suggestions and search functions.
Enables them to manage their emails and newsletters easily
Inbox management comes with its downsides. Between long email chains and calendar reminders, employees have their work cut out for them. A major contributor to stress and inefficiency is the number of newsletters arriving every day. It might have been easy at one point to keep with sparse newsletters and promotional emails; not so much today as sites crank up their publication speed to multiple emails per day.
Depopulate your inbox through RSS readers. Promotional emails and newsletters stack cleanly in your dashboard leaving important emails easily spotted and readily available. Advanced readers such as Inoreader can readily subscribe you to newsletters. For everyone else, Kill the Newsletter turns newsletters into RSS feeds.
Helps them discover experts in a particular field
RSS removes the distractions associated with passive browsing and sharpens users’ focus on what’s new and important. You will see many brands use RSS feed readers for social media listening to identify brand ambassadors and influencers. Readers can also be of use when searching for new experts that you’ve either missed or are just up and coming.
A closer look at filtered and structured subscriptions gives you better opportunities to spot names that keep popping up. Another strategy is to target existing thought leaders and investigate who they converse with. One way to do this is to subscribe to a Twitter user’s likes – this opens a portal to many potential leads.
Saves their time
Automation is the name of the game. In the midst of the Industry 4.0 revolution, a tool’s survival hinges on how well it reduces users’ time and effort placed on menial tasks. RSS feed readers do this as a baseline function. Users don’t have to refresh a site’s landing page to check for new posts, nor do they have to visit each site individually either.
Advanced RSS readers also automate repetitive tasks such as sharing posts on social media, saving articles on platforms like Pocket and Evernote, and messaging them out to team’s emails or chats. All this can be done either within the RSS reader itself or through third-party integration.
Helps them concentrate on more important tasks
Ultimately, it’s all about focus. Passive scrolling claims hours upon hours of people’s time without contributing much to accomplishing important tasks. This extends beyond leisure activities and affects work performance as well given how easy it is to lose oneself in industry blogs and social media circles.
RSS readers restrict how much time we’re spending on online publications and other sources. In part because everything you need to know is collected in one place and in part because you’re not on social media to do your discovery, so there are fewer distractions to keep you from ticking off tasks on your to-do list.