In this article, you’ll learn about the benefits of proper schedule management and how to make delegating calendar management for executives easier.
Let’s get right to it:
CEOs work an average of 62.5 hours a week, based on a study conducted by Harvard Business Review.
All that work is bound to put a strain on one’s physical and mental health, so it’s no surprise why business owners are delegating more tasks to their executive assistants — including calendar management.
It’s the process of organizing your to-dos in a way that best maximizes your time, both at work and in your personal life. This is usually done through applications like Google Calendar and Outlook. More than anything, though, it requires smart time management and a strong grasp of your priorities.
There are several reasons to hand this task over to your executive assistant, such as:
Offloading calendar management can do business owners a world of good. But as with anything involving your company, it’s normal to have reservations like:
Whether it’s protecting clients’ sensitive information or keeping your personal life private, we know it’s a big deal to entrust your calendar to a person halfway across the world. But there are ways to share your calendar with your remote executive assistant while safeguarding your data, such as:
While teaching your assistant about your schedule and preferences may seem like a chore, it’ll be worth it in the long run.
Let’s say you dedicate a few hours of your schedule to writing down your SOP or recording a walkthrough on Loom. By documenting each step, your assistant will have an easier time learning. Plus, you’ll have training materials to use in the future.
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Now that you’re convinced it’s smart to hand over the schedule management reins to your assistant, let’s discuss how to do it:
If you only use your calendar to schedule meetings, you’re not using it to its full potential. You aren’t getting the full picture of what’s in store each week, and you run the risk of forgetting an important event.
Here’s a list of items you can have your assistant plot in your executive calendar:
Have events color-coded for more convenience. Purple, for example, can be assigned for internal events while orange can represent external events. You can also color-code based on priority level.
Don’t want to meet a client before having your first cup of coffee for the day? Then share your preferences in a file. It’s best to have them documented so your assistant won’t miss anything.
Here are some things to include in your personal preferences doc:
Don’t forget to take out-of-town trips into consideration, especially if you’re a frequent traveler. You may want to hold off on meetings unless they’re absolutely essential.
The next step is to weigh all your to-dos according to importance. With your assistant, identify what should go first on your agenda, what can be put off till the end of the week, and what someone else can do instead.
The Eisenhower Matrix can help you with this. Named after President Dwight Eisenhower, it’s a tool that simplifies how you gauge priorities. It’s divided into four quadrants:
Will your assistant accept calendar invites on your behalf or will you do it yourself? When will they need your go-ahead? You need to specify the extent of their role. If this isn’t plainly defined, you might wonder why there are random meetings you “agreed” to attend.
Sometimes, you’ll be faced with surprises. These can be suddenly rescheduled meetings or an urgent problem, like a glitch that charges customers double.
You won’t experience these every day, but to be safe, allocate time for them. Maybe one hour three times a week — the exact hours and frequency will depend on your kind of business. By factoring in unexpected tasks, you can avoid the headache of reshuffling your whole schedule.
Calendar management is an art and a science, and with your busy schedule, you just can’t perfect it by yourself. Nor can you expect your executive assistant to read your mind.
You’ll need to work together to develop a system that’s organized and in tune with your priorities. Once you do, say hello to better productivity.
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Proper calendar management is crucial when you’re operating a business because it:
Here are some tips on how to organize Google Calendar and other calendar applications: