Google Calendar tips that will improve your work

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When it comes to organizing your schedule, Google Calendar offers a solution that is accessible and easy-to-use. Millions of people worldwide use it to organize their day-to-day tasks and keep them focused on their current projects and ventures. Google developers are constantly reworking the foundation of their calendar program to ensure users have a more full and enjoyable experience.

While you may know the basics of Google Calendar, there are some lesser-known aspects that could improve your workflow and streamline your daily plans. Some integrations, for example the integration with Tempo Timesheets, can save you a lot of time. Here are some other Google Calendar features you may not know about, but definitely should. 

You Can Make Calendars For Unique Reasons

When you first log into Google Calendars, by default you are given one calendar to work with. Many users will continue to use this single calendar and fill it up with events and appointments that they need to attend to during the year. To find this calendar all you need to do is click on the ‘main menu’ sidebar on the upper left-hand corner of the screen. Your calendar can be found under the ‘my calendar’ tab. 

Not everyone’s life can fit in one calendar, which is why Google Calendars allows all users to create multiple calendars for their schedules. Whether there are just too many things to track on one calendar outlook, or users prefer to remain extremely organized, creating multiple calendars is easy to do. Simply, click on the ‘+’ next to the ‘other calendars’ tab, which is right under the ‘my calendar’ tab. You will have the option to create a new calendar and even colour coordinate them for convenience. One example for companies is using an extra calendar to keep track of employee vacations.

You Can Schedule Meetings Based On Your Contact’s Availability

Meetings are an integral part of business, whether it be scheduling a meeting with a business partner, a client or a customer, being able to access your contact’s schedule and arrange a time that works for both parties is imperative. Google has tried to facilitate this process by giving users the opportunity to look at their contacts’ availability. 

If you wish to schedule a call, meeting or appointment with an individual in your contact list, you have the option to view their ‘suggested’ times, as well as the option to view the times they’re commonly free at. To view the ‘suggested times’ or ‘find a time’ feature, you must create an event and then add all attending participants. You will then have the option to ask Google for times and dates that your contacts will be available for - do this by clicking on the “suggested times” button. Doing this will prompt a dropdown window where you will be able to see the times that your selected contacts are free.

The other option is the “find a time” option, where you can see the times that conflict with your contacts. Next to the “event details” tab, you will find another tab named “find a time,” clicking on it will bring up your contacts’ schedules which will allow you to find a time that suits everyone’s needs. If you find a time that works for all parties involved, simply click on the time on the calendar and press ‘save.’ Voila! Your event is saved and your contacts are invited to a meeting that does not conflict with their schedule. 

Hide Details About Your Event

In many workplaces, employees have access to Google Calendar events to ensure they are in the loop about ongoing meetings. Unfortunately, for managers and business owners, this may be an issue especially if you’re trying to meet privately with a select few people. Whatever the meeting may be for, it would be nice for Google calendars to permit users to hide event details from all uninvited contacts. As it happens, this feature already exists, it’s just that not many users are aware of it. 

If you are looking to hold a private meeting, click on the event on the Google Calendar main page. Once the event is open, you can click on the pencil symbol to modify details regarding the event. Upon clicking the pencil symbol, look for an icon that resembles a briefcase. Next to the symbol should be two scrolls down menus to choose from, the first should say ‘busy’ and the one to its right may say ‘public.’ Be sure to change it from ‘public’ to ‘private.’ When you’re done this, be sure to click the blue button at the top of the browser that reads ‘save.’ Congratulations, your event has been saved and its details are hidden from the rest of your contacts. 

Enable Notifications On Your Desktop

You’d be surprised how many businesses and individuals use Google Calendar to ensure they don’t miss important events. A big reason it’s so effective is that it is relentless in trying to keep you on track; if you’ve ever had Google Calendar open in your browser while you had an event to attend to, you know that it will show a giant alert on your screen with a sound that can be quite frightening and irritating - it is one reason other calendar services, like Asana and Calendly, have become more popular.

Thankfully, there is a solution! In your Google Calendar settings, there should be an option that allows you to receive notifications on your desktop instead. Doing this will stop Google Calendar from sending you annoying alerts when you’re in the middle of your work. A significantly smaller and more subtle notification bar will appear at the upper right part of your screen, advising you that you have an event to attend to shortly. You can also turn notifications off entirely if you want even more focus.

At the right hand of your Google Calendar main screen, there should be a gear icon. Click on it and then click on the ‘notifications’ box. Be sure to select the “desktop notifications” button and then return to the main screen of Google Calendar. No longer will Google Calendar obnoxiously interrupt your workflow by reminding you that there is an upcoming meeting. 

There you have it! Those are four Google Calendar secrets you didn’t know about before. To learn how to implement the Google calendar integration with Tempo, click here.

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