Hey, gotta minute? We hear it all the time at work. Someone sticks their head in the door. Someone else stops us in the hall. Students ask questions of their teachers. Children direct questions to parents.

Let’s face it, we all have that “look” that answers the question…often before it’s asked. Kids know by the look on Mom’s face that “now” is not a good time. You can tell when your boss is “on a mission” just by the way she’s walking down the hall.

Some of us have more intentional signals. The office door that is shut means one thing. The same door slightly ajar means another. The open door means something else. An elementary teacher may don a funny hat or apron. That special apparel is the sign for “do not disturb” as the teacher works intently with a small group.

Social Cues 

Whether we think about it or not, those social cues are important. They send messages as to the best time for interaction with us.

When we work remotely, those social cues are absent. When someone picks up the phone to call, he can’t see we’re in the middle of a project that requires deep concentration. When working remotely, we need a tool that’s going to help interaction happen at a time when both people have the time and both are in the frame of mind for that interaction to be productive. That situation is where technology can help. It’s why technology such as Meetingbird is so important. If you missed the last article, go there to become familiar with the mechanics and then come back here for additional examples. You can read the article here.

Design Your Day

We need uninterrupted blocks of time for intense work. We also need time in our schedule when we are available to interact with others. Decide when you want to be available. Use a tool such as Meetingbird to create “scheduling links.” 

In the last article, you read about Ben. His team members have a link where they can schedule a 15-minute conference on Friday afternoons. Vendors have a link where they can schedule a lunch meeting.

Do you use discovery calls in your business to turn leads into clients? If so, provide a scheduling link that makes it easy for people to get on your calendar. Craft the times so they fit your day. Create a few questions and include those in the scheduling process. When potential clients click the link to schedule a time, they also give you information that helps you be prepared for the call. 

Designing Your Day for Educators 

Are you a teacher and have parents who need to schedule conferences with you, either in person or virtually? Be proactive and decide how you want these interactions to fit into your week. Decide on days, times, and lengths. Create a “scheduling link” and make it available for parents.

Are you a principal and need to schedule evaluation conferences? Do you need to be available to attend special education meetings? Decide on the days and times each week you want to be available and create a scheduling link. 

Nobody will ever have to say, “Hey, you gotta minute?” When they’re on your schedule, no doubt exists. They also don’t have to rely on social cues to determine if “now is a good time.”

Control Your Calendar

So you’re using Meetingbird to schedule available times. Don’t forget, you remain in charge of your calendar. Just because a scheduling link includes Tuesday afternoon for people to sign up, that doesn’t mean you’ve given up the freedom to schedule your own events. Put whatever you need to do on the calendar, and Meetingbird removes that time as available. You remain in control of your calendar and in control of your time.

Take the guesswork out of your availability. During a time of remote work, it’s too easy not to do.