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I confess to being a bit of a gadget geek. I love my new Tether Tools kit for my iPad, and I’m no stranger to browsing the latest apps. It does take me a long time to make a decision on which one to get, though.
Here’s my pick of the gadgets every project manager should own. These would make great additions to your holiday gift list for when relatives ask you what you’d like to receive. Or, buy them for the project managers that you know!
1. Foot Warmer
As some of you know (and if you were on my last webinar you saw me in it), I work in a converted shed in the garden. At this time of year it’s cold.
This Foot Massage and Heated Foot Warmer (£24.95) is perfect for those freezing winter days to help keep you warm when it seems like the person with control of the thermostat prefers to keep the office in artic temperatures. Or if you work remotely from an ice box, like me. This foot warmer also has a massage feature.
2. Wireless Headset
This wireless headset (£80.00) is a must have especially if you like to walk and talk at the same time. With a six hour rechargeable battery and a 12 meter range you are no longer tethered to your desk for meeting and Skype calls.
3. Shiatsu Massage Cushion
Take a break during the work day with this Shiatsu massage chair cushion (£89.98). Strap it to your office chair and let the 14 different massage settings help take away the stresses of your latest project, at least for a little while. It shuts off automatically after 15 minutes making it perfect for a break.
Or you could get a voucher for your local salon (I have a standing appointment every 8 weeks).
4. Desk Lamp
Correct lighting can help reduce eyestrain during the most intense projects. I have overhead lighting in my office but also a lamp because this old shed doesn’t have too much natural daylight.
This desk lamp (£36.99) is a nice modern design with five different color modes to choose from. It is also dimmable so you can find the perfect setting for whatever you are working on. Plus it has a USB port to plug in your phone or other device.
5. Desk Fan
In the summer a fan is essential where I work! On those days that you need to cool down you will love having this personal desk fan (£11.99). It plugs right into a USB port so no need to hunt down a free wall plug. It is also quiet so it won’t bother any of your coworkers, or create too much background noise for your conference calls.
Read next: Gifts for Project Managers
6. Portable Scanner
For those moments when you need to copy a page of notes, photos, diagrams or charts this portable scanner (£172.00) is perfect. It runs on batteries and doesn’t need to be attached to a computer to work. It stores the scans on an SD card making it easy to upload to your computer.
7. Bluetooth Keypad
Do you have a keyboard that doesn’t include a numerical keypad? My take-along iPad keyboard doesn’t. Make your life easier entering numbers with a Bluetooth keypad (£19.99). Pop it into your bag to take it with you. It also works with iOS devices.
8. Laptop Cooling Stand
I had no idea these existed! This is genius. There is nothing worse than getting into a groove of work on your laptop and having it shut down because it is overheated. With one of these cooling stands (£15.99) you will be able to raise your laptop to allow proper airflow as well as a better ergonomic position. At only 200 grams (7 ounces) it will not weigh down your bag.
9. Charging Station
Your phone, your tablet, your personal device, your work device all add up to much clutter on your desk. A desktop charging station (£26.99) can be a great way to organize it all plus keep everything charged too. You can charge up to six devices at once.
10. Meteor Microphone
I have a Meteor microphone which I use for recording videos but also for professional quality sound for Skype calls with my project team. This is one of the best out there and I can personally vouch for the quality. Plus it looks awesome and makes me feel like a modern-day 1950’s starlet.
11. Artificial Aquarium
My office is devoid of all living things if you discount the spiders. Bring a little life into your office with this whimsical artificial aquarium (£18.99). It brings all of the benefits without any of the work of live fish. Sounds just about my level of commitment! You just need to add water!