Mick Jagger understands how important it is to have time on his side. Do you? How do you get the Satisfaction of being in control of your calendar instead of being your calendar’s Beast of Burden? Our lives are so hectic and busy; wouldn’t it be great to know all of the details of your appointment with “Angie”? Watch this video for five strategies for being more efficient and productive with your schedule.
Try these tips and make sure you are not left Waiting on a Friend on a Ruby Tuesday. My apologies to The Rolling Stones, sometimes when you Start Me Up it’s hard to stop. 😉
Hi. I’m Lorie Marrero, and today’s Clutter Video Tip is about smarter scheduling. In other words, how can you use your paper or electronic calendar a little more efficiently to capture the details that you really need to know about each appointment that you make?
First I’d like to introduce you to a phrase – TBD. “To Be Determined.” This is so handy when you want to hold a slot on your calendar but you don’t know exactly what time you’re going to have the appointment yet or where you’re going to meet this person. So you can use time, or place, or both, TBD, in the subject heading of your appointment to make sure that you don’t have to rely on your memory to know whether those decisions have been made.
Secondly, I want to talk about your RSVP’s, or registrations for events. Sometimes you put an event like a conference or a seminar on your calendar really far in advance because you want to have it on your radar. But you’re not sure when the time gets closer if you’ve actually registered or RSVP’d to that event. So go ahead and have a habit of putting the RSVP status in the notes of that appointment. I’ve shown some pictures here of Outlook here on the screen, but you can certainly do this with a paper calendar as well.
Another thing that gets missed often when people have a phone appointment with each other is establishing simply who is calling whom. And it really does cause a lot of confusion, because sometimes you can waste five or 10 minutes of an appointment time crossing over each other, either both calling at the same time or waiting for the other person to call. So obviously that’s very inefficient. When you make an appointment with someone, always establish who is calling whom and write that into your calendar. I do that by simply naming my calendar appointments different ways. If someone else is calling me, I put their name first: “Jennifer calling at such-and- such time.” Or if I’m calling them, I say, “Call Jennifer at such-and- such time.” So that helps me have a little shorthand for knowing who is calling whom.
If you have an appointment with a person in person at a place like a coffee shop, it’s a really good idea to always exchange cell phone numbers with that person, and ideally I usually put that cell phone number in the notes field of the appointment, even if I have the person in my contacts already, just because it’s handier. People are often running five or 10 minutes late, you might be running late, there might be some kind of emergency, and you need to reach them.
And finally, if you have an appointment to talk by phone or Skype with someone in a different time zone, always over-communicate the time zones. So when I have a phone call to someone in New York I always say, “2:00 PM central, 3:00 PM eastern.” I say both times every time, and even when I do that, people still get confused. So it’s just always better to over-communicate.
If you like these tips, we have more for you. If you want to have our tips and strategies that come out in our newsletter every Thursday, they are a digest of these videos that we do, blog posts that we do, and any other articles and announcements that we have. You can look at that at clutterdiet.com/freetips, where we also have some bonus items for signing up for that newsletter. Again, that’s clutterdiet.com/freetips.
See you next time, and may you always be happy and grateful for having more than enough.
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