Best Practices for Scheduling Your Day and Setting Appointments Part III of III

21. Journal your meeting notes.  Many people don’t know how to use the Journal feature in Outlook or even what it’s for!  If you’ve ever accidentally clicked it, you’ll get a pop-up box that asks you if you’re SURE you want to turn on the Journal.  Most people freak out and click NO.  Next time, click yes.  Open a new Journal entry, type up your meeting notes, put in the day/time of the meeting, indicate in the Contacts field who was at the meeting, and select a Category for the meeting name or project.  When you select that Contact and click the Activities tab, you’ll be able to see the Journal entries (notes) from every meeting you’ve ever had with that person. You can also pull up your Journal entries by Category to review meeting notes as far back as you’d like.  OR give your notes to y … [Read more...]

Best Practices for Scheduling Your Day and Setting Appointments Part II of III

11. Keep your calendar up to date.  It’s frustrating when your colleagues are trying to set up appointments, and it appears that you’re open, so they send out a meeting request to a large group.  You respond, “Sorry, I have a conflict on that day/time,” to which they respond by banging their heads on the desk in frustration, asking, “Then WHY didn’t you have it on your calendar?”  Truly, if an organization is going to predictably use shared calendaring to coordinate meetings, you must keep yours current.  It’s fine to use a traditional paper method as well, but if you schedule something on your “other” calendar, make sure to update your electronic one at regular intervals as well. 12. Include travel time in a single appointment and put the actual meeting time in the subject.  If your meeti … [Read more...]

Best Practices for Scheduling Your Day and Setting Appointments Part I of III

Numbers 1-10 of 30 scheduling tips: 1. Determine if you really need to meet in person.  How many times have you attended a meeting and asked yourself, “Why am I here?”  Hopefully, you’ve started protecting your time from every person who wants a piece of it.  If my clients want to meet in person, I charge a consulting fee.  For telephone calls, no charge.  Ninety percent of the time, a conference call will suffice.  Extra travel time and expenses are involved when meeting in person, so avoid it unless dialogue and brainstorming are required. 2. Have meeting requests and responses go to your delegate, not to you.  Don’t wade through all the responses; that’s why you have an assistant (if you do).  Under Tools, Options, Delegates, select “Send meeting requests and responses only to my deleg … [Read more...]