Scene of a team meeting at a table with spread out documents and water glasses from above

Too many meetings… and not enough time to work?

Between morning standups, all-hands, zoom calls and brainstorm sessions the working day can sometimes feel like a social marathon. And by the end of it you feel like you’ve barely gotten anything off your actual to do list!

For concentrated tasks to happen, it’s important to have a set amount of time to focus without distration, which can be a challenge when your calendar is packed with meetings. An hour between calls can feel like too little to start with that big presentation that needs doing and feel more conducive to less urgent admin and procrastination to relax you in between strenuous meetings. But with this cycle, how can you ever get anything done?

Here are our favourite tips to avoid the meeting relay race and manage time efficiently:

👍Shorten your meetings. An hour-long call can start with an 10-minute catchup and friendly chat, which can drain your time if you’re on a tight schedule. By scheduling 25-minute calls you’re more likely to focus on what needs to be discussed.
👍Start meetings with a clear agenda to dive into.
👍Bulk-book your meetings. By planning meetings in a bulk of time you can have a dedicated focus period in which no meetings happen more easily.
👍Schedule daily focus time. Try blocking out a 3 or 4 hour section of your day for focussed work in your calendar, at the same time every day or week.
👍Turn off notifications. During your focus time, switch off your email, phone and any interactive sites.
👍Use 25-minute timers for intense work, followed by 5-minute break (also called the Pomodoro method).
👍During actively stressful periods where a deadline is coming up, ask your colleagues if you can opt out of certain regular meetings until your deadline is over. Be sure to offer them the same when they’re in a stressful period, too!