It probably never crossed your mind. But a shared calendar can boost efficiency and communication both at home and at work. Why? Sharing your calendar with your coworkers, family, and customers will also help you stay organized. As an additional benefit, they enable you to be more productive and prevent many small errors from occurring.
Shared calendars, when used properly, can produce extraordinary results. You must, however, gain a deeper understanding of your calendar. For this reason, here are some benefits and tips for optimizing the shared calendar.
What is a Shared Calendar?
Your calendar becomes a shared calendar when you share it with someone or a group, such as your colleagues, family, or friends. Depending on the purpose, you can create several calendars and share them with different people.
As an example, you may create a team calendar for your coworkers so that their tasks can be tracked. You can also share a personal calendar with your family to keep on top of events such as birthday parties, family gatherings, or school events. Moreover, you can allow them to edit/modify events and appointments in the shared calendar.
Why Do You Need to Share Your Calendar?
People share their calendars for a variety of reasons. These include keeping track of their children’s extracurricular activities and upcoming doctor’s appointments or keeping tabs on the progress of a team project.
As hybrid work models have become more popular, more people are working virtually. In fact, as of 2022, 26% of U.S. employees work remotely. As a result, it has become increasingly important for people to stay in touch with each other. At the same time, due to the fact that most of us work from different locations, it becomes increasingly difficult to schedule meetings and keep track of everyone’s schedule.
The Benefits of Using a Shared Calendar
Shared calendars can be accessed from any device, anywhere.
Whether you have a laptop or not doesn’t matter. You can check your appointments, add or remove tasks and manage your team through your online calendar by logging in from another laptop or tablet. And, thanks to the plethora of calendar apps available, you can also access your calendar right from your smartphone.
As a result, there will be less to carry around to meetings or between home and work. Even cooler, everyone in a meeting can set up the next one and sync it to their phones.
You can customize your shared calendar.
“No matter what calendar tool you’re using, they do offer some level of customization,” writes Angela Ruth in a previous Calendar article. “Because of this, you can alter it to fit your specific needs.” Using Google Calendar, for instance, you can change the view from week, month, or agenda.
It is also possible to change the colors, the title, and which items you want to be displayed. If you have several businesses or clients or manage several projects, that can be helpful in keeping you organized.
You can also create customized calendar links with other tools, such as Teamup. You can use it to securely access permissions. Additionally, you can give each calendar a unique name to make it easier to identify them.
“One of the most significant issues on Calendar invites is the subject lines,” adds Angela. “Make a better effort to have a definitive subject line.”
You can share calendars with your team.
It is easy and quick to manage workloads, tasks, deadlines, and milestones with a shared team calendar. Members of your team can be added or removed, tasks can be assigned, and unassigned tasks can be managed.
Moreover, you can differentiate the level of access rights for each user based on their competence. As a result, some team members may simply open the calendar and the assigned tasks to see the specific information, while others may edit and add tasks.
As well as viewing their own schedules, your employees can also see the schedules of their colleagues. In addition, you can receive notifications whenever a task is assigned or edited.
Ensures that your assignments are balanced.
The best thing about sharing calendars? They balance your assignments with those of your teammates. In addition, you can view your employees’ calendars and get a better sense of their availability and obligations. By doing this, you can plan out your appointments and tasks more effectively.
Additionally, you can review their calendars to find out what kind of clients they met with and what kind of tasks were completed. As a result, you will be able to better plan your projects.
You can have both short and long-term vision.
When planning a calendar, it is common to plan one month at a time. While that is true, there are times when looking at a day or week in detail is necessary. In other cases, zooming out is required.
The majority of calendars offer multiple views, such as daily agendas, weekly schedules, monthly agendas, and quarterly timelines. Using these views, you can see the daily workload of each team member and also have an overview of the project as a whole.
You’ll never experience FOMO.
Did you ever feel bad after forgetting a family dinner or a friend’s birthday party? Even worse, did this cause a severe case of FOMO?
Thanks to a shared calendar, such situations are prevented since you’ll receive reminders. Also, notifications will appear when you need them, even when you forget them.
Aside from setting appointments, you can also receive RSVPs. If you invite multiple people to a meeting through an online calendar app, you can request a response.
Set recurring meetings or appointments.
“When you have meetings that repeat themselves, it can get messy,” writes Max Palmer in a previous Calendar article. “With calendar software, you can set up a recurring appointment with ease.”
In the future, the team will no longer discuss the monthly updates at the last minute. Once an appointment repeats, the remaining days, weeks, or months will be automatically filled in. As an added bonus, this prevents calendar conflicts, like double-booking yourself.
Meeting scheduling and rescheduling are not only inefficient but, it’s also very irritating. After all, on average, corporate employees spend four hours a week preparing for and attending meetings. On top of that, 71% of professionals lose time each week because of unproductive and canceled meetings.
When calendars are shared, the possibility of rescheduling a meeting is reduced, saving you time and money.
Easily integrates with other online project management and calendar tools.
The ability to integrate cloud project management tools and online shareable calendars is a very important feature since many people use different tools. As an example, Calendar can be connected with a variety of other calendars, including Google Calendar and Microsoft Calendar. It also integrates with tools like Hubspot, Square, Zapier, and Zoom.
All your team members will be on the same calendar, so there will be no surprises with all of your scheduling in one place. When everyone is on the same calendar, it will also be easier to identify conflicts in advance and plan accordingly.
For instance, taking a long vacation or having other priorities is super stressful when you’re working on a project with everyone, and suddenly, one of them decides it’s the perfect time to take a break. To ensure that projects are delivered on time, you must have clear foresight.
Using online calendars, you can organize and manage your team members and schedule tasks more quickly and easily. They also assist you in being more efficient by automatically routing the time/distance between locations, estimating how long a team will take to complete a task, and so forth.
What are the Different Ways to Share Your Calendar?
There are a number of ways and scenarios in which you can share your calendar. When you create a calendar and add events to it, you can make it public and grant different permissions to different users. In addition to viewing the free and busy schedules, they can view events already added and edit them.
iCal and HTML formats are available for every calendar, which is assigned a unique URL. Whenever you want to share your calendar, you can send your iCal URL to friends, colleagues, or groups within the organization so they can import it and add it to their calendar.
Public URL sharing
You can share your calendar with a wider group by using a public calendar. The View only Free/Busy information or View event details option allows you to restrict others from accessing your calendar information. A public calendar cannot be edited or changed by others.
Private URL sharing
You might not want to make your calendar public all the time since everyone will be able to view it. By sharing the private URL, you can limit the number of people who can access your calendar.
Sharing with specific people
Alternatively, you can send an invitation to your colleagues or any group to share your calendar. They will be able to access your calendar as soon as they accept the invitation and subscribe to it. When you need to share your calendar with your assistant so that she can manage your daily activities, this is especially helpful.
In order for people to book an appointment with you, you might need to embed your calendar on your website. In the calendar details, you will find the HTML code for embedding the calendar. You can embed the embed code into your website’s HTML code, and the calendar will appear on your wikis, blogs, email signature, and websites.
Image Credit: Photo by Andrea Piacquadio; Pexels; Thank you!
Editor-in-Chief at Calendar. Former Editor-in-Chief and writer at Startup Grind. Freelance editor at Entrepreneur.com. Deanna loves to help build startups, and guide them to discover the business value of their online content and social media marketing.