CEO Calendar Management: Strategies for Executive Assistants

Unlock the best practices for CEO calendar optimization and learn how to hack your CEOs calendar with effective calendar management techniques for CEOs.

The Meetingnotes Team
January 26, 2024

In recent years, business leaders have had no choice but to navigate uncharted waters. The COVID-19 pandemic followed by economic challenges has forced even the most storied CEOs to pivot and innovate in an attempt to stay afloat. In an ever-changing business landscape that continues to present new challenges, effective calendar management is crucial. Effective calendar management allows CEOs to remain flexible and responsive to emerging priorities or unexpected challenges. Having a well-organized calendar reduces stress by providing a clear overview of daily, weekly, and monthly priorities, allowing CEOs to balance various aspects of their role, ensuring nothing falls through the cracks. 


In this article, we’ll teach you how to hack your CEOs calendar with the most effective calendar management techniques for CEOs so you can save time, and ensure they are making the most out of theirs! Keep reading to learn about the best practices for CEO calendar optimization! 


The role of calendar management for CEOs

CEOs have demanding schedules with several responsibilities. Effective calendar management helps them prioritize tasks, and allocate time to their most important priorities, ensuring they don’t get bogged down with unnecessary tasks and can make the most of their limited time. Effective calendar management not only allows CEOs to prioritize their tasks, but it also allows them to carve out time for strategic thinking, planning, and reflection, which are crucial for long-term success.


Working with an executive assistant that can effectively hack their time will ensure they are able to nurture all aspects of the company including leadership, operations, financial planning, and external stakeholder relationships. This flexibility will reduce stress, while allowing them to remain agile and focused, ensuring the organization is always top of mind. 


Best practices for CEO calendar optimization:

1. Leverage a calendar management tool

Calendar management tools bring structure, organization, and efficiency to your schedule; however, finding the right one can be difficult. Fellow is a top-rated meeting productivity and calendar management software solution that empowers executive assistants and CEOs with the tools necessary to improve meeting efficiency and automate administrative tasks within the meeting lifecycle. This tool makes it possible for executive assistants to facilitate impactful meetings, while saving time on unnecessary administrative tasks. With Fellow, you can book meetings, collaborate on meeting agendas, centralize, and assign action items, and keep track of work interactions and feedback over time, fostering alignment and accountability before, during, and after every meeting.


2. Review your CEOs calendar regularly 

Calendar optimization can be challenging if you don’t actively review your commitments. Prioritizing regular reviews will ensure you can proactively manage your CEOs commitments, ensuring they’re making the most of every minute. If you don’t actively review your CEOs calendar, they may find themselves missing important functions, double booking, or running late to meetings. Calendar apps provide a visual representation of your schedule, making it easy to visualize and understand your events, commitments, and deadlines. This functionality allows you to gain a clear understanding of how and where your CEO is spending their time, making it possible to plan and allocate resources more appropriately. 


3. Avoid back-to-back meetings 

Back-to-back meetings can create a packed schedule, leaving little to no room for fostering deep work, nurturing connections, or leading a company. This can make it difficult for CEOs to thrive in their role, leading to increased stress, poor decision making, or even burnout. To mitigate this risk, it's important to actively manage your CEOs calendar and refrain from scheduling back-to-back meetings. If you can, consider allocating certain days of the week to no meeting days. This will ensure your CEO has time to recharge, form connections, and focus on high-value tasks. 


4. Turn down unnecessary meetings 

Unfortunately, you won't be able to effectively optimize your CEOs calendar if you don’t perfect saying no to meetings. The reality of the situation is that not every meeting will be beneficial and worth their time. If the invite doesn’t encompass information that pertains directly to your CEO or lacks a clear meeting agenda, it's best to decline the meeting and encourage your CEO to allocate their time elsewhere. As their executive assistant, you are responsible for protecting their time. 


Leveraging technology for efficient calendar management:

1. Fellow

Unlike other CEO calendar management solutions on this list, Fellow goes beyond what a regular calendar app can offer and instead works to complement the features available to you in a calendar app. From helping you host productive team meetings and meaningful one-on-ones to providing templates for collaborative meeting agendas and comprehensive real-time note taking capabilities, Fellow has everything you need to stay on track and organized during your workday.


Integrating your calendar (Outlook or Gmail) with Fellow means Fellow can work with your schedule and act as your co-pilot, making it easier to find your meetings and take in-depth meeting notes. When you navigate to your meetings page, you will see all your meetings in a Calendar view just like your regular calendar. The difference is that you can select a calendar event, and the corresponding notes will open! For recurring notes, previous meeting notes will appear in one long note series so to see the complete history of that meeting, you just need to scroll down. If your calendar is not synced with Fellow, this makes it more complicated to find and organize meeting notes. You'll also miss out on some features that will save you time and energy such as carry-forward, and private notes.



2. Zoho Calendar

If you're an executive assistant managing a CEOs calendar, chances are their calendar is unruly and implementing effective calendar management techniques for CEOs can be nearly impossible if you don’t have a comprehensive CEO calendar management tool in your tech stack. Zoho Calendar is an online CEO calendar management resource that makes scheduling a breeze. With Zoho, you can create events, invite users, manage group calendars, and organize your team events with shareable calendars. Whether you choose to leverage Zoho to stay organized and manage your personal schedule or to keep your team on track with shared calendars, this CEO calendar management tool is simple and easy to use. 


Additionally, Zoho allows you to schedule meetings without all the back-and-forth communication, saving you time and energy that can be better spent elsewhere. With your calendar embedded on your website, anyone who wants to meet with you can request an appointment in one click. You can approve or reject these requests and even customize the appointment form with the color and language of your choice.  You can embed your calendar online for everyone to see or share a private URL of your calendar for a smaller audience to see. To streamline your CEOs calendar management system, you can complete these steps on their behalf. 


Zoho Calendar

3. Calendly

Nothing is worse than spending time you don’t have facilitating meetings. Calendly is a scheduling automation platform that enables users to schedule, prepare for, and follow up on external meetings. Built to save you time by streamlining communication and eliminating back-and-forth emails, Calendly simplifies scheduling for over 20 million users worldwide, helping busy executive assistants find the perfect meeting times for their CEOs with ease. Simply prompt your CEO to share their availability with a custom link that connects to their calendar and automatically let their peers know when they’re available to meet. You can now empower your CEO to book high-value meetings in seconds and turn scheduling into a competitive advantage, without adding extra work to your plate. 



4. Week Plan

Week Plan is a priority planner for highly effective CEOs that are looking for a calendar management solution that balances daily tasks with long-term objectives. Designed to help users take control of their calendars by identifying different roles, defining objectives, tracking time incurred, and monitoring results, Week Plan offers a robust solution for goal-oriented CEOs that are seeking to elevate their productivity.


Effective calendar management techniques for CEOS can be difficult to implement without the proper set of CEO calendar management tools. With Week Plan, you can stay organized and on track by setting targets, designing workflows, adding milestones, and creating tasks that help you achieve your goals! 

Week Plan


5. Fantastical

CEOs are responsible for overseeing various aspects of an organization, including strategic planning, financial management, operations, human resources, marketing, and so much more. As a result, it can be challenging to stick to one task and avoid multitasking. Luckily, there are calendar and task management resources that you can set up on behalf of your CEO that make it possible for users to focus on pressing priorities, without getting lost in the details.


Fantastical is an award-winning calendar app with powerful features, including intuitive natural language text parsing; a full calendar window with day, week, month, quarter, and year views; event and tasks templates; and so much more! Fantastical empowers users to focus on what matters by enabling focus filters, making this an excellent resource for busy CEOs that struggle to prioritize their responsibilities. It’s as simple as enabling your work calendar when you’re in the office or setting reminders to call your kids when you get in the car. Your CEOs calendar will automatically adjust based on what filters you choose, meaning you’ll only see what you want to see. 



6. Todoist

CEOs often have demanding and multifaceted roles that require effective time management to ensure productivity and success. Multitasking allows them to address multiple issues concurrently and make timely decisions. However, multitasking without the proper set of tools may lead to reduced focus and attention, poor decision making, and poor time management. To mitigate these risks, it's important for CEOs to leverage resources that foster accountability and exceptional time management. 


Todoist is a task management and productivity tool that can help CEOs manage their calendars and stay organized with several intuitive features including task creation and organization, due dates and priority levels, reminders and notifications, smart scheduling, and offline access. Additionally, Todoist can be used in tandem with calendar apps, making it possible for you to integrate your calendar with Todoist to unlock a unified view of how your tasks and responsibilities fit into your busy schedule. 



7. Sunsama

Sunsama is the ultimate daily planner for CEOs, managers and leaders who have a lot on their plates. Designed to help users prioritize productivity, Sunsama creates synergy between to-do lists and calendars, making it possible to be intentional about weekly goals and progress, while hyper focusing on high-value tasks. To ensure no tasks or meetings go unseen, Sunsama bi-directionally syncs with all your calendars, and you can drag and drop tasks from your project and task management tools for ultimate visibility. Sunsama will also automatically update your tasks in your other tools when you import them or check them off your list. 



Are you ready to hack your CEOs calendar? 

Applying these strategies and techniques outlined in this article will help you optimize your time, while ensuring your CEO has the bandwidth necessary to lead your organization with determination and grace. Don’t forget to check out the MeetingNotes blog for more tips and tricks on how to manage your time more effectively! 

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