The Google Calendar integrates with Outlook so sharing is easy

The question about sharing the Outlook calendar with others comes up a lot in my workshops I conduct on managing time with Outlook. If you’re on an Exchange Server it’s no problem. But what if you’re working with a virtual assistant or you’d like a family member to always know where you are? There are various solutions, but Google has taken all the pain away.

I use Outlook to its fullest. If you knew it the way I do, you wouldn’t use anything else. It never crossed my mind to use the Google Calendar until now. Google integrates with Outlook and you can easily share your calendar with the public or only with certain people that you designate. And it’s free! (Is this old news? I’m just now finding out.)

Keeping the two in sync is easy…as easy as with your PDA. Any change I make in Outlook is synched to the Google Calendar as soon as I connect to the Internet. This is just too good.

Will the NCAA tournaments cause a dip in productivity?

Sporting News recently reported that heavy sports enthusiasts spend on average over 31 hours a week following sports. Amazing. I spend zero minutes a year on it.

If you’re going to get caught up in the festivities of the NCAA tournaments next week, remember that the work still has to get done. Since most people work like machines when they know they’ll be off, how about pretending that you’re going on vacation next week.

Will we see a dip in productivity? It depends.

  • Slackers will use this as an excuse to do less work. If they’re surfing the net, talking sports all day, handling personal business now, they’ll just do more of it next week.
  • Conscientious employees will continue to meet goals, beat deadlines, and service the customer.

If you, as the boss or owner, are also getting caught up in it, people will do what they see you do. If you’re going to require less of them next week, you should require more from them this week.

Note: See this blog entry for more information on how people waste time at work.

PEACE.

Keep Your Overloaded Inbox Under Control

I just got back from presenting my most popular seminar, “Conquer Email Overload with Outlook,” at a conference of magazine editors. If you think you have email issues, try being the editor of a popular magazine! They receive tons of irrelevant email from public relations companies and individuals trying to get press.

I have tons of ways to manage email overload in my book, Conquer Email Overload, and here in this blog. Here is one I suggested to this group.

Keep Messages Separate
Use two email addresses…one for the Web (don’t make it clickable). It’ll read like this: editor (a(t) xyzco.com. Then create a rule in Outlook that sends all this email to a special folder as soon as it gets to your Inbox. (There is no valid argument for putting your clickable email address on the Web. Spam will continue to be a huge problem if you do because spambots crawl sites looking for the @ symbol. They’ll find it inside PDFs too.)

You can use this same email address on your business card.

You could also consider not including this email address in your regular Send/Receive. You’ll have to manually check email coming to this address…maybe have a routine to do it once or twice a week…deleting immediately and not letting them pile up.

Consider getting rid of the email address that’s “out there” too much. It won’t be the end of the world…just do it and start over. For the editors, I also recommended setting this new email address up with an autoresponder that returns a message that explains what their publication is about, what makes a good story, the best way to submit a query or deliver a pitch, and a link to their Webpage that explains more. They’ll also put this email address inside the publication instead of their main address.

For the second email address, use it internally, give it to the PR people who always send you relevant press, and to other important people in your life (like me).

And that’s it!

PEACE.

Related Posts

Email Etiquette Can Reduce Email Overload

Cure Email Addiction: 15 Things to Try


Send an Email Addressed to Undisclosed Recipients

If you’ve seen an email addressed to Undisclosed Recipients and wondered how it was done, here are two options.

First Option

When you create a new message, on the To line, type Undisclosed Recipients, and next to that put your email address inside brackets . Then see Step 5 below to finish the message. (When the recipient gets your message, they’ll only see Undisclosed Recipients on the To line…not your email address.)

Second Option (This is what I’ve done so I don’t have to remember anything later.)

Create a new Outlook contact:

  1. Full Name: Undisclosed Recipients.
  2. E-mail: Put whatever email address you’ll send the email from.
  3. Display as: Undisclosed Recipients.
  4. When you Save and Close the new contact, if you get a message indicating duplication, choose Add this contact anyway.
  5. When you send your email, type Undisclosed Recipients on the To line, and put recipient email addresses on the Bcc line. (If you don’t see Bcc and use Outlook 2003 as the email editor, click View, Bcc. If you use Word as your email editor, click Options drop down arrow, Bcc.

    For Outlook 2007, click the Options tab, Show Bcc.

  6. The recipient will only see his or her email address when you use Bcc. You can also put a distribution list name on the Bcc line and it works the same way.

And that’s it!

PEACE.

Related Posts
Email Entire Contents of a Folder
Keep Your Overloaded Inbox Under Control

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Peggy Duncan, personal productivity expert