Let the web broker your time.

by Admin 26. August 2008

It seems as though there has been a plethora of sites to help with organization, and lately there has been a strong emphasis on time brokering. For people who have to schedule a lot of one-on-one meetings – either for personal or professional reasons – a site like TimeDriver could be a great help.

TimeDriver is designed to help broker meetings by allowing you to set up either one-time or recurring blocks of time, and send people links that let them grab appointment times in those blocks that remain unclaimed.

TimeDriver can link to Google or Outlook calendars if you want to make sure you’re not duplicating appointments, and the system will write appointments back into your calendar when people claim times. You can also put a link in your emails and take appointments from anyone – that could be dangerous. There are more advanced features that can prevent scheduling last-minute meetings or seeing more than a few time slots. One criticism however is the lack of buffer times between meetings, which could cause issues if you have to travel between them.

The site has a tool to send out emails to everyone on your list and will track all of their responses.

The basic TimeDriver service is free. Paid and enterprise versions will get additional features, such as calendar pooling, analytics, and custom branding options.

My recommendation, convince your dentist to use TimeDriver.

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Another meeting manager.

by Admin 26. August 2008

Earlier today I posted about TimeDriver – an automated, time broker to help schedule one-on-one meetings – only to stumble upon a similar service called TimeBridge this afternoon. I told you there are a lot of time management sites out there.

Unlike TimeDriver, TimeBridge is a meeting negotiation product allowing for multi-person meetings and allows the attendees to vote on the best time to meet.

So how does it work? The organizer sends out several proposed times for a meeting, and the site will coordinate the replies of attendees until everyone agrees on a single time, at which point it will lock in the agreed-on time for everyone and release the tentative hold it had on the alternate spots. The interesting feature is the ability of attendees to flag a specific time as the “best” time for them, which the system considers a vote when identifying the meeting time.

TimeBridge does integrate with Outlook and includes a very handy “Reply with TimeBridge” option that it adds to Outlook if you install the add-on. If someone sends you an email about a meeting, you can use this option to transfer the discussion to the TimeBridge system. All this while syncing up with your Outlook calendar so is it aware of available times.

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Fifty Final Offers

by Admin 22. August 2008

Anyone else getting bombarded by callers (and mail) offering extended warranties on your car because yours is about to run out and this is the FINAL offer, over and over again?

I’m sure you are, I think this is one of the biggest marketing blitzes launched in a long time. I’ve tried opting out of the calls, I tried to speak to someone in management but they do not permit that. They have the whole thing very well rigged so that you can only get to them if you are buying. I even tried pretending I was buying and as soon as I asked who I could speak with about the calls, they hung up. I was glad to read the following information; maybe this will be of help to you too.

The Maryland Attorney General’s office has this to say:

Consumer Alert: Be Wary of Offers for Automobile Extended Warranties

The Attorney General is encouraging consumers to hang up if they receive unwanted telemarketing calls, and beware of any offers of extended warranties. If consumers receive calls on a phone that has been registered with the national “Do Not Call” database, they should provide information on the callers, including the identity of the caller and the number from which the call was placed, to the Consumer Protection Division. Consumers who wish to add a phone to the “Do Not Call” database can do so by calling 1-888-382-1222. The marketing mailings may appear to be an important notice from the consumer’s car dealer or auto manufacturer. There is always an eye-catching warning on the front of the card, such as: “Final Notice: Expiring Auto Warranty.”

Visit the AG’s site to learn more: http://www.oag.state.md.us/Press/2008/071408.htm

It’s bad enough getting those calls at home but now they call at work and on my cell! Oh well, I guess it’s entertainment for lonely shut-ins.

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