May 09, 2008

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Productivity & The Grave Part 3 – The Resources The third part of this series on having your estate in order we're going to look at some resources that will contribute to being proactive and thereby, productive. In Part 1 we looked at the whole idea of getting our heads out of the sand and collecting the information on the things that we should handle in our will and trust. In Part 2 A&B we look at the conversations that need to be had within a family and with experts. Here we're going to overview the resources that could help you a lot and how to locate them. The short list of resources that should be of value to you are: A couple of good books so you become educated An Estate Lawyer A Tax Accountant A Friend or Family Member to be your executor and trustee. A Financial Advisor A Great Filing Cabinet & Filing system (that's covered in Parts 4 & 5) On why they're important and where to find them: Books Book learning is vital to you being prepared because there is so much to learn that a professional would be outrageously expensive and just wouldn't have the time to go over all these points with you. Reading a book or two before you meet with the resources below will allow you to streamline your time with them (saving $) and to ask relevant and intelligent questions (getting the right things in place as a result). I found two books on Amazon.com that have served me very well in these few months after my Dad's passing. The titles of the books that I read cover to cover and educated me extensively are: Beyond the Grave by Condon, and The Wise Inheritor by Perry. The thing that will serve you well on Amazon is that you can type in these titles and Amazon will suggest at least 7 books that are similar. One of those might appeal to you more. These options come under the description of the book and are titled "Better Together" and "Customers Who Bought This Also Bought…" An Estate Lawyer You need to find someone who has written wills and trusts and has been around long enough to learn what goes wrong with average, incomplete, and naïve documents and plans. For example, Charlie is worth $3,000,000+. His brothers are the successor trustees when Charlie dies. However, neither brother is worth more than $500,000...
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Print Smart – It’s Green & Streamlined Streamlining, saving resources, and simplifying are some of the foundations of being productive. Printing more efficiently is one of the ways you can do all three things – simplify the paperwork you have to manage, save the resource of paper and all the elements that go into its production and streamline your systems. Naturally the first consideration is whether you need to print an electronic document in the first place. A local company appends this to the end of every email: Save a tree! Please don't print this e-mail unless you really need to. A client prints every PowerPoint just before she races off to meetings because she's so overbooked. Until we get the booking issue streamlined, here's a hint for printing more effectively that will work for her and perhaps for you – print 2 pages per piece of paper. This practice also saves time – printers are only so fast so printing 2 pages per sheet of paper will print in half the time! Here's a sample - click on the thumbnail to see a full-size version. You've probably seen it before but haven't bothered to figure out how. So, here's a Productivity Café 'how to'. When you're ready to print, open the Print Dialogue box (start printing) with ctrl-p (we love shortcuts...) or click on file, print, print. Match your dialog to the sample below, select your 'page density' or how many pages will go on each sheet of paper and print it in the 'zoom' area in the bottom right of the dialog box. Print, read, and enjoy being a greener printer!

Susan Sabo

I am a tool-loving productivity specialist who gets things done so I can travel the world, bicycle our country, spoil my friends & colleagues, and show you how to do the same.

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