One our main goals is to use software to make life easier and business better. Sometimes it’s not about developing new software, sometimes it’s just as much (if not more) about knowing which off the shelf tools to use and how to put them together to solve a problem. Why reinvent the wheel?
If you ever have meetings in your business then there’s a couple of tools that might be helpful to you. The first is one I use all the time, the second is one I’ve recently discovered that might be helpful to some of you.
Scheduling meetings, particularly with people outside of your office, can be a pain at the best of times. There are a few tools around now that exist to help take care of this. The one I use, and the one I think that is the more powerful of the options, is x.ai. Originally it incorporated an AI chatbot that acted like a PA, but these days they’ve simplified things a little.
X.ai takes care of the back and forth arranging available times for all participants, this becomes particularly useful when there are more than 2 of you! But it also allows people just to pick from a list of available slots, so that they can find something that suits them.
It can be surprising how much time the email ping pong can take. It’s not until you take that process out of your day that you realise how much of a drain it was!
If we’re saving time booking a meeting, then once you’re there you want to make sure that time is well spent too. Nobody needs endless meetings that have no outcomes. The new tools from Agendali look like they could really help to keep your meetings productive and valuable.
Although at time of writing the app hasn’t fully launched yet, it looks like it will be a browser-based tool that includes agendas for different types of meeting, tools to keep the organiser focused, and the ability for participants to provide feedback on the meeting they’ve just attended, which hopefully leads to iterative improvement.
The only catch that I can see is that the tools are initially aimed at Accountants, so a lot of the meeting templates might be too specific - although I think you’ll be able to add your own. I contacted the developers and they pointed out that the launch into Accountants is because of their existing domain knowledge; they can add value with suitable templates from the word go, but they do intend to broaden that base over time.
One thing they did make very clear is that the software will only help if the business is committed to using effective meeting methodologies. So there might be some preliminary work required in some businesses.
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