By Caterina Rando, MA, CPPC
Get a Wall Calendar and Thrive
Last year I started using an online calendar called Schedulicity®. It allows clients and late-night-surfing potential clients to book their own appointments. It also lets my THRIVE Team members book and change appointments for me, and everyone on my team can see my whole schedule. (Here is a link for a 60 day free trial)
Wall Calendar versus Online Calendar
I am still using my online calendar, and I like it a lot. But sometimes you just can’t do without a good wall calendar. While I love the efficiency and increased productivity of an online calendar, usually you can only see one month at a time, so you are prone to overbooking. We all want to get more clients, but overbooking should ultimately be avoided.
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!
Now besides my online calendar, I have a 3-by-5-foot wall calendar that I can glance at and see the whole year in an instant.
Put only daylong activities in your wall calendar and keep your appointments on your online calendar.
For example, if you need to attend business seminars and workshops that would last for a couple of days, put it in your wall calendar. If you need to brainstorm over coffee about marketing strategies for small business, put it in your online calendar.
Color coding your calendar for different activities may work for you too. This way, you can easily review activities according to color. For instance, you can put marketing workshops in red and daylong schedule for small business marketing in blue. To give you an idea, here is my color code system:
- 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 year-long elite client mentoring program
Color-coding is valuable for many reasons. You can see in an instant if you have any months where you have not hit your business goals. You can see which months are looking slow and need some revenue excitement added. And most importantly, you can see if you have free time to spend on some rest and relaxation.
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, and I know it will make your planning more effective and ensure you get your needed downtime.