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How to use the calendar tool effectively

Khizar Hayat Saani

Overview

Good managers always manage their time effectively. A calendar can help us achieve this by providing a default record of what we are doing with our time.

Our calendar should contain all our engagements on any given day and free time slots that people can book.

Rules

Here are some simple rules that will help us organize our calendar at work. Remember, our calendar should never overwhelm us:

  1. Only use your calendar to organize the time.

  2. Manage your calendar.

  3. Keep the calendar tidy and meaningful.

  4. Make meetings public.

  5. Use notifications.

Calendar Rules

Organize your time

Our calendar is solely for organizing our time and nothing more. Please do not use it as a to-do list. That job is for our actual to-do list.

The calendar must only include the following:

  • Meetings with other people
  • Activities that indicate you are busy (e.g., coffee, lunch)
  • Each day is divided into blocks of time to prevent clashes between activities and meetings

This will keep our calendar from being unnecessarily booked or cluttered with unrelated information.

Manage your calendar

We must manage our calendar in a way that allows taking breaks to grab lunch or get away from our desk for some personal time.

We’ll also need free time slots to focus on our tasks. The calendar is as much for you as it is for other people.

Keep your calendar tidy and meaningful

Your calendar is a representation of you. It is both for you and other people to use. Always aim to keep it tidy and meaningful.

Avoid adding unnecessary engagements that take up slots on your calendar.

Keep your calendar tidy

Make meetings public

It is usually a good practice to make your meetings public to the organization where possible. This allows for greater transparency between you and your team so that they always know what you’re doing with your time.

If the meetings are public, your team will always know where they can get to you in case you’re out of the office for matters that require instant attention.

Use notifications

Lastly, we should use reminders to make the most out of the calendar tool. Most calendars have automatic notifications to remind us of our next calendar event ten minutes before starting.

These reminders can help wrap up our current activity before moving on to the next.

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Khizar Hayat Saani
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