Three Ways to Rule Your Diary to Stop It Ruling You
It’s time to be ruthless with your diary.
Now I don’t mean missing that kid’s birthday party, or family do, no matter how much you might want to…
I mean being as efficient with your time as possible, so you can produce better work, in better time.
1 – It’s time to C-Block yourself
Calendar blocking, it’s the way of the future. Why, what did you think I meant?
Let’s say we’re working on a piece of PR for a client. And you’re that client. It will take two hours. Would you rather we focused exclusively on your PR for two hours or would you be happy for us to get interrupted by phone calls, emails and messages?
I’m guessing it’d be the former, which is why calendar blocking is crucial.
It takes eight minutes to get back in the zone, so the quality of your work will always be compromised if you let other people or things encroach upon your time. My team has access to each other’s diary, so they know when everyone is and isn’t available.
We have two meeting rooms people can use if they need to shut themselves off. Short of a fire breaking out, they are not to be disturbed.
2 – Don’t fall victim to the email ping
How many times a day do you check your email? Do you have it switched on seven days a week on your phone? Do you check it in the evening and at weekends?
Now, there’s always someone who’ll say they need to have access to their email 24/7. But most of the time, it’s in their heads. The reality is they can’t let go. They are indispensable to their business and need to be contactable at all times.
I dare you to try this – take your work email off your phone and only check it on your desktop / laptop… twice a day. Hardcore, eh? But you’ll be surprised at how much additional time that gives you. To better help clients or relax with loved ones. And not just more time but FOCUSED time.
Would I rather have one hour with my daughters when they get my undivided attention or two hours but my phone’s beeping every five minutes?
Do not be a slave to your phone. It is the biggest distraction tool ever and email plays a massive part of that.
3 – Please leave a message after the beep
If you answer the phone every time it rings, it’s like having a meeting every time somebody wants one. What if someone wants a “quick chat”, which turns into an hour? That client work you were wanting to start now has to get pushed back. That’s not fair, is it?
What about if you literally always answer it? Not only could client time or family time suffer, you’ll be training these people who call you that you can be reached WHENEVER. If you’re answering the phone on a Friday night, who’s really in the wrong? The person who thinks it’s OK to call you on a Friday night or you for answering?
There are a number of solutions but the best one is to have a professional who takes your calls for you. It could be an employee, it could be an outsourced call answering service.
At Codebreak, we’ve taken it one step further. This is because playing telephone tennis with people took up too much… yes, you guessed it – time.
If someone wants a call, that’s fine. We call them… and there’s often no answer. So, we leave a voicemail. Then they call and we’re busy. It goes on and on until both parties lose parts of their soul slowly and painfully.
To prevent this, we’ve started giving people online access to our diaries. They can see when we’re free and book a slot at a mutually convenient time.
We limit the slots to 20 minutes. Again, like a meeting, there should be a start time and an end time to work towards.
If someone doesn’t like this approach, I use the PR example that I mentioned earlier. The Codebreak crew produces quality marketing work. That takes experience and creativity, absolutely, but it also takes dedicated focus. If you’re getting pulled in a million different directions, that simply can’t happen. Something will suffer for it.
So… who’s in charge of your diary? You or whoever?
If you’d like a free Q&A to talk about any marketing challenges you’re facing, book a Discovery Call via codebreak.co.uk If you haven’t guessed, it’d be 20 minutes….
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