Some things you think will be simple actually end up getting really complex. Google knows this all to well, which is why it recently rolled out a brand new Google Calendar — and plenty of nifty features to go with it.
While a few features in the latest Google Calendar aren’t new, they have changed somewhat. Still other features you might not know exist at all. Let’s go over all of them to make your life a little easier.
Your Google Calendar comes with your personal Gmail address, and you won’t believe how simple it is to use and set up. But if you work at a company that uses its own Google Calendar, you suddenly have to find out how best to integrate your personal calendar with your weekly meeting schedule.
Google Calendar can start to feel a lot less simple the more events you have on your agenda. Luckily, there are some cool hacks and under-the-radar features you can use to make your life in Google Calendar much easier to organize.
Below are 18 of our favorite tips, tricks, and features available in Google Calendar.
When you first start out on Google Calendar, you’re given one calendar to start with — it’s the one with your name under “My calendars,” as shown in the screenshot below.
So, if you want to use your calendar for multiple purposes — like managing your actual schedule, planning periods of focused work time, and scheduling repeating reminders — you only have one place to do it. But when you’re only working with one calendar, all of those things get treated equally — meaning you can’t quickly and easily pull up the non-repetitive, important tasks you have for the day.
To combat this, just create a new calendar for each part of your life you’d like to keep track of on your Google Calendar.
To create a new calendar, click the little plus sign (+) next to “My calendars,” and you’ll see the option, “New calendar.” Select this option, name your new calendar, give it a description and time zone, and voilà — you’ve got yourself another calendar.
Pro Tip: You can even color-code each calendar to make it easy for you to pick out what you’ve got to do each day.
Do you ever need to arrange a meeting with several people who have busy schedules? It can be really annoying to try to figure out when you’re all free. Thankfully, Google Calendar actually has two features that can do the heavy lifting for you: “Suggested times” or “Find a time.”
To use either of these two options, first make sure you’ve added everyone to the event who needs to attend. Then, if you’d like Google to suggest a time for you to meet, simply select the “Suggested times” link below your guests’ names. A dropdown window will appear with a list of times when every meeting guest, including you, is available with no conflicts.
“Find a time” is the other way to quickly find a time that works for every guest included on the meeting invitation. To use this feature, choose the tab next to “Event details” called “Find a time,” and you’ll see everyone’s schedules side-by-side for the day of your intended meeting. When you see a time when none of your guests have conflicts, click this line of the calendar to highlight the time and press “Save” at the top of your Calendar.
Pro tip: you can also use a free product like HubSpot Meetings to easily schedule meetings without back-and-forth emails.
Sometimes, the meetings you host or attend are sensitive in nature. Keep in mind, however, that a closed door isn’t the only way for others to know what’s going on inside. The event’s details in Google Calendar can also reveal more to the rest of the office than you’d like.
To ensure you have as much privacy as you need during more sensitive meetings, set your event to “Private.” This makes it so nobody viewing your weekly schedule sees the details of the event — meeting name, attendees, attachments, and so forth. By default, the public label on the event block will simply be, “Busy.”
To privatize the details of certain events on your calendar, click the event from your calendar view and select the pencil icon to edit the event’s details. In the window that appears, find the briefcase icon just above the event description field.
With the first field set to “Busy,” click into the second field and select “Private” from the dropdown, as shown below. Hit the blue “Save” button at the top of your screen and you’ll be all set.
Need to easily set up a face-to-face remote meeting? Just click the link to “Add video call,” and Google will set up hangout for y
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