If any of you have not seen the blog post Wendii put up with the links to all the MT Recommended actions, you should get there ASAP.

What I would like to know is if there are any other daily/weekly/monthly tasks/activities/actions that people schedule?  How strict are you on things like processing your email/voicemail?  Or doing walk arounds just to meet and keep up with people in your department?  Or even scheduling listening to an MT podcast (or any type of professional development).





jbancroftconnors's picture

I use my Calendar for pretty much everything.

One of the first things I learned to do was schedule my own time. If I have to work on a project plan, I schedule a meeting with myself. This means I know I have that time free.

Then I moved to scheduling repetive work tasks that took time. I had a CTL-Shift-K for my weekly status report, but never found the time. So I scheduled a half hour for it. After taking a "Time Management with Outlook" class I scheduled times to do my email.

Boils down to I decided it was my calendar, not other peoples. I use it to manage my day.

pwalker73's picture


I definitely schedule walking the floor on a weekly basis, along with any hand written notes of congratulations or gratitude I need to prepare and share.  This can fall into the 'ad hoc' box but because it is scheduled, I do it.

I also schedule time, each week, as 'network' - this is the time I catch up on follow ups be them Linked in type requests or people I have met in the week to follow up - also the important old network of previous bosses/teams/quality contacts - even it is Hi, how are things?, it a good discipline imo.

I've learned a lot from these podcasts but scratch the service in my 2 hour commute in Istanbul, Turkey!

good luck

munropm's picture

Hi there is another post Podcast  called The Basics of Calendar Management. It also provides addtional things that should be scheudled.

PaulChan's picture
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I too use my calendar to block off time to work on particular tasks. For example I block off Thursdays 9-11am for longer term planning. I also block off Fridays 9-11am for my weekly review (as in David Allen's GTD). The advantage is that if others try to book meetings with me for those times Outlook will show it as busy.

I also use my calendar to record time usage and use labels to colour code calendar events into categories such as team, self, others, family, etc. This allows me to do a "Drucker analysis" by looking at the month view to see if there is too much/not enough of a particular colour e.g. not enough Team time which can indicate I'm neglecting them.

knickels's picture

I have an interesting "twist" on this - I'm a college professor and I am required to have 10 hours of scheduled "office hours" a week.  I'm trying to block off time for tasks, but at any moment during these 10+ hours a week a student can walk by and trump my plans.  But I want to be effective when there is not a student there.

I wish that I had little enough to do that I could just schedule everything I needed to do in the remaining 40 or so hours a week, but that's not reasonable... 

I can imaging helpdesk or customer service folks might have similar issues - any advise on being effective during easily-trumpable time?

Kevin Nickels

Engineering Professor in San Antonio

tlhausmann's picture
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I was a professor (computer science.)  I used office hours for catching up on journal reading and any highly ephemeral printed material that invariably came into my mailbox.

It was hard preparing lecture materials when interrupted.

GlennR's picture

Were I in your shoes, during the times when I was accessible to students, I'd schedule tasks that can be easily disrupted. Such as those related to administration, cleaning out my email inbox (I try to subscribe to inbox zero) filing, responding to non-time sensitive emails that don't require a lot of thought, etc.  I could also do some brainstorming but I wouldn't start planning a presentation or writing a lengthy document. Would it be feasible for you to catch up on your reading in your field?  I'd also catch up on my thank you note writing.