Whatever job it is you have, whether you’re doing freelance work at home or doing speaker training, having a calendar is imperative. Online calendars are readily available, but sometimes good old wall calendars are still ideal.
The Online Calendar
Last year I started using an online calendar called Schedulicity®. (Here is a link for a 60 day free trial) It allows clients to book their own appointments, and it lets my THRIVE Team members book and change appointments for me, and everyone on my team can see my whole schedule.
While I love the efficiency and increased productivity of an online calendar, there is a down side to it that no one tells you. I believe we all know how to use a calendar, but when you only see a month at a time and start to get super busy, you can easily succumb to overbooking.
Here is my cautionary tale. Last year, because I did not have a calendar where I could see several months at once, I scheduled, for the beginning of this year, five of my own two-day events in five weeks, plus my annual Goals Gala, our client appreciation event. These were big productions that demanded a lot of energy from my whole team and myself. I was wiped out. Never again!
The Wall Calendar
I now have a 3-by-5-foot wall calendar in addition to my online calendar. When I need to see the entire year in an instant, I simply glance at my wall calendar.
Keep your appointments on your online calendar, and use only the wall calendar for daylong activities.
Also, you may want to color code your calendar for different activities so you can easily review them. My color code system is the following:
Green stars for my two-day summits
Purple stars for my two-day advanced programs
Gold stars for travel days
Red stars for marketing speeches or paid speeches
Pink stars for VIP days with clients
Orange stars for my yearlong elite client mentoring program
I discovered that, as a Speaker and and an Entrepreneur, color coding your wall calendar is valuable for a number of reasons.
In my case, I can see right away if I have any months where I have not hit my goal of 4 marketing speeches each month or which months are looking slow and need some revenue excitement added. And equally important, I can see if I have free time after my speaking/training days to spend on some rest and relaxation. If you are a public speaker or you want to become a public speaker to get clients, don’t forget to pamper yourself every once in a while, because if you’re stressed out, it will definitely show
I love my wall calendar. I have been recommending to all my clients the use of a wall calendar in addition to your smart phone and online calendar. Try it. I know it will make your planning more effective and ensure you get your needed downtime.
By Caterina Rando, MA, CPPC