We should all be well aware that the time value of connecting with anyone through a meeting comes from the actual meeting. What that really means is: We waste valuable time the longer we take to schedule a meeting.
The image above is a classic example.
“When are you available?”
The likely response: “I’m free xyz time this week.”
And so the response to the response: “Oh, I can’t do then, how about these times instead?”
- Please stop this.
There are many tools that remove this time suck.
Today I’ll be highlighting one tool that does so really well: Calendly.
I chose Calendly because 1. It’s free; and 2. The people that made this tool were very considerate. They thought about the other actions to scheduling a meeting that also require time that shouldn’t be done manually anymore.
And now I want to specifically talk about those actions – Why? Because they make a tremendous difference over time, so if you’re using another tool like Calendly, and it’s missing these details, I might suggest you switch over.
When you think about all the people you contact and try to connect with, there’s a lot of time to waste setting up a meeting. That’s why it is so important to minimize the time needed to do that.
I’m going to break down each step towards that setup and how you can use Calendly to go from “When are you available?” to “use this link, I’ll see you soon.”
Scheduling A Meeting: The Workflow breakdown
Look at these two workflows. Using Calendly, once you’re all set up, all you have to do is wait for people to click on your link and schedule a time with you – everything else is all taken care of!
Availability checking? Done for you.
Calendar invite? Done for you.
Conferencing room created? Done for you.
Have a set of questions you want to have answers to prior to the meeting ? Done for you too.
With Calendly, it takes maybe 15 seconds max on your end to get scheduled with someone.
Compare that with the traditional path which can take 5 minutes if you account for all the switching between email and calendar, even if you were to pre-make templates…
So from a time ROI standpoint, you can schedule 20x more easily. Sound like a no-brainer? Of course it is, so why would I go through and point this out? After all, what are the chances you aren’t aware that this is how most people schedule time nowadays?
Maximizing the Calendly Link and Your Time
It’s actually really surprising to me when I go into a networking meeting that people still copy and paste their email, phone number, and all this other information other than a brief explanation of what they do and who they serve.
Here are a couple other things you could that can really maximize how Calendly saves you time:
Once you have your link, you no longer need to deal with any requests to meet. Put your link in your email signature, making it clear that they can schedule with you that way. Drop it in all your bios, embed it on your website, and/or add it to your copy/paste text whenever you’re sharing your info at an online networking event.
On that last comment about sharing your Calendly with people most likely to spam you with their products/services (ah, networking events) – use those pre-meeting questions that you can set up within Calendly as gatekeeping tools! If you don’t like how people respond to those questions, or if they clearly aren’t a fit – you can always just cancel the meeting. Your time is precious, and you decide who to connect with. Most conversations can turn out serendipitously valuable as good networking isn’t just about who you connect with, but also who the people you’re connecting with are connected to, but hey, not everyone gets that, so, I’m just giving you the freedom to cancel, or even just reschedule, what doesn’t work for your time.
And so again, my point here is to invest your time wisely setting up how people are going to experience getting to schedule with you once they click on your calendly link. With that, I’ll say Calendly has a couple of pleasant features which exist in their pro version, but they’re nice to have.
One other Tool that’s not Calendly
Okay, so since I’m on the subject, there is one other tool I can share that creates a similarly fast and efficient experience with scheduling time with other people. It’s almost brand new to the scene.
Ever heard of Undock?
So if you’re a big fan of using email on your browser, and you’re one to like suggesting times in an email, fret not about needing a Calendly link.
Try using Undock – also free. With a simple forward slash (/), you’ll get a pop up that lets you click a variety of times that work for you based on your schedule – right in your email. Should the person (or people, Undock works great if you’re emailing a team) be an Undock user as well, their available times, including their preferred meeting times, will already be accounted for! Then it’s just up to the receiver of your email to click on the hyperlinks made automatically from the Undock tool to pick whatever time works.
In comparison with Calendly, Undock may end up being even faster than the already few seconds it takes to get a meeting set up through a link that you just need to copy/paste or memorize every time you want to meet.
I love saving time. I hate setting up meetings. I love saving time not having to set up meetings.
Whether that’s through Calendly, or from trying new tools like Undock, which are sure to have their efficiencies under different circumstances.
One final thing I’ll leave you with: If you find yourself now connecting with other Calendly users, save their scheduling link in your notes. That way, when you need to schedule time with someone who’s already shared a calendly link with you, all you have to do is pull up that link!
Until next time, happy scheduling.