In this lesson you will review the functions and importance of calendars as a tool. Understanding them can increase your technology skill. You will learn more about the options you have and how each one can help you manage your schedule and time. You will explore how using a calendar can help improve your productivity skill. Specifically, this lesson will cover:
- Functions of Calendar Tools
- Types of Calendars
- Microsoft Outlook
1. Functions of Calendar Tools
Do you know what you have to do this week? If you were called to interview for your dream job, would you know which days you are available? Chances are you have lots to accomplish each week. You have personal tasks, tasks for work and, hopefully, some time set aside for yourself. One of the easiest ways to keep track of it all is a calendar.
In the past, you would need to carry a paper calendar to keep track of things. That system works, but it can be messy when you need to move things or reschedule due to conflicts. The good news is, there are now lots of digital options available to you. These calendars allow you to easily move appointments, add notes, categorize things and more.
Many digital calendars allow you to share your calendar with family and friends. This makes it easy for those you share with to find time to meet with you or plan an event.
2. Types of Calendars
Much like people typically have one web browser they prefer over others…..most people have one calendar they typically use. This can be for a number of reasons. They may like the layout of the page or the way you can color code items. It is up to you to select the one that has what you need to improve your productivity
- 2a. Built-in
like Windows or Mac come with a built-in calendar tool.
It can be tough to use these calendars if you are not in front of your computer. Many who choose to use these also sync them with another online calendar. For example, if you have an iPhone and you are usings your Mac OS calendar, you can set up sync so you can view and edit your calendar on both devices. You could also sync your Windows calendar with an online option like Google Calendar. The most important point to consider is which option will work so well for you that you use it on a regular basis.
Taking the time to learn about all of your calendar options will improve your technology skill. The knowledge you gain will allow you to choose what will work best for you and you could even help others do the same.
- Operating Systems
- Built-in calendar tools that come with digital devices, such as Windows or Mac products.
- 2b. Online
are cloud based. This means the data you enter can be accessed from just about anywhere as long as you are logged into your account. You can use your personal computer, a work computer or even your phone. All you need is an internet connection. Many of these calendars are free and some have an option to pay for a version with more features.
One of the most popular options is Google Calendar.
While these calendars are very popular, it is important to remember two things:
- You can view your calendar without an internet connection, but you cannot use most features (like editing) without it
- There are digital privacy concerns with online calendars. As with any online tool, some of your data is collected by the company
Check out Google Calendar.
will help walk you through the process. Explore the features available and consider whether or not you would want to use an online option like this to help you track your schedule.
- Online Calendars
- Cloud based calendars in which the data you enter can be accessed from anywhere that you can log into your device.
- 2c. Microsoft Outlook
Outlook is an email and calendar tool that is part of Microsoft Office 365. It is a combination of an built-in and online calendar. You install it on your computer so you can access and use it even if you don’t have an internet connection. On the other hand, it is also cloud based so you can access it from a web browser or mobile app.
Mike likes access to his work email when he is home. This allows him to check each morning to see what is on his schedule for the day before he leaves for work. This helps him mentally prepare for his day. Rather than taking his work laptop home each day, he uses a web browser on his phone to log into Outlook with his work email. He can then open the calendar and preview his day.
In this lesson, you learned more about the functions of calendar tools and how they can help you manage your time. You reviewed key aspects of some of the types of calendars available to you. You can choose to use a built-in calendar or an online version, depending on your needs. Many individuals choose to use the Microsoft Outlook calendar that you explored more in depth in the final part of this lesson. Strong technology skills can ensure you are aware of these tools and you know how to use them. Regular use of a calendar can then, also, improve your productivity.
Enjoy the next challenge!