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Calendar Planning Tutorial – Time management for business owners

by | How-To, Management, Productivity

Today’s post is about how to organize your calendar to ensure maximum productivity and return on investment on your time. 

Step #1 – Schedule Personal Time

Even though it may seem counterproductive, schedule your personal time first. So cross off when you’re going to go to sleep, cross off taking your kids to school, walking your dogs, working out, having a dinner date with your husband or wife, lunch breaks etc. Schedule all those out first. 

Step #2 – Start & End of Day

Then, mark off when you want to start and end your workday (example: if you want to start working at 8:00AM and finish work at like 6:00PM). Mark those times off in your calendar. 

Step #3 – Fill in Standing Meetings

Next, fill in your standing meetings. If you have any kind of repetitive meetings that you have every week or every other day, then create and mark those off in your calendar now.

Step #4 – Denote Sales Call Availability

After that, you should block off the times when you want to be available for calls for your clients or sales calls and that kind of stuff. 

Make sure that when you mark these off in your calendar, you don’t actually mistakenly set yourself as busy during those times. Because that would mean that if you actually want to schedule someone during that time, your calendar will see that you’re unavailable. 

Marking those times in your calendar stops you from mistakenly scheduling tasks during that time, that you will then have to push off because a sales call or client call has come up unexpectedly. 

Step #5 – Project Management Delegation

The next thing that I want you to do is schedule some time with your virtual assistant at the very beginning and at the very end of your workday. 

Usually, 15 to 30 minutes should be more than enough for what you’re going to do. 

In the morning, your virtual assistant can bring important items for the day to your attention, so that you start the day with them already in your mind. 

At the end of the day, you can offload everything that’s on your mind to your VA so they can then take them in and delegate them, so you can get them out of your mind and know that those things are handled. 

If you don’t have a virtual assistant, obviously, you’re going to spend this time taking care of project management. 

The key here is to know, especially if you have a virtual team, what time zone each teammate is in so that you can delegate and assign tasks to them when they’re most likely to see them. 

So for example, if you start work at 8:00AM, and you know that your teammate starts work at 10:00AM, then these two hours (between 8:00AM and 10:00AM) represent the best time to offload tasks to them because when they come to work at 10:00AM, they’ll already see them there. 

Step #6 – Production & Promotional

Next thing that you want to do is to schedule those promotional and production types of activities. You want to schedule those first. 

Always, always try to give yourself at least a 15 minute buffer between calls or tasks and a little bit of a longer break every two hours or so to rest your shoulders, stretch your legs a bit and have a bio break or anything else that you need. 

Once you start scheduling things this way, you might begin to notice that you stop having time for all of these pedestrian or provisional types of activities. 

And that’s perfectly all right. That’s the purpose of this. 

You want to delegate those things, you don’t want to keep doing them yourself over and over again.

You should double check that you filled your calendar with the most important stuff and you haven’t overestimated or overstretched your personal time a little bit too much. 

If you have been on point and you still see yourself not having enough time for fulfilling all of the business that’s coming in, or doing little bits and pieces here and there, that’s fine, just delegate that work as soon as possible. 

The work that you’re doing inside of the sales and the production is much, much more important and will give you a much better return on investment.

Extra Tips

An extra tip that will help you organize and make everything look just a little bit better is you can color code the events in your calendar by their types. 

For example, let’s say you color your personal time in black, then your scheduled calls in red, production types of activities in blue and so forth. 

Another thing that you can enable inside of your calendar is you can make your personal time to be private. 

That way, when your assistant or somebody else that has access to your calendar looks at it, they can see that you’re busy during that time, but they can’t actually see what you’re doing. 

So if privacy is an issue for you, you can always set those meetings to private. 

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