Nathan Sykes

March 26, 2021

My Attempt To Have All Meetings One Day Per Week

I've been doing an experiment over the last few months, since about November, trying to schedule all of my work-related meetings on one specific day - Thursday. I'd still have normal phone calls and unscheduled check-ups, but if you wanted a slice of my time, you had to carve out a chunk of your Thursday to make it happen.

I quickly ran into two issues:
  • External groups
  • Large meetings

I categorize external groups as anybody who doesn't work with me or for me. If you're my employee, I get the luxury of telling you when I'm available! If you work with me as a contractor, you probably still want my business and aren't going to let having our meetings on Thursday be the deal breaker to what could otherwise be an excellent working relationship. But for other things? Say, meeting with a business owner, or booking a podcast interview, or doing some other activity where I need as much leverage as I can get, it's hard to tell the person "by the way, I only book meetings on Thursdays."

I tried, at first. It lasted exactly two tries before I was ghosted by the person I was trying to build a professional relationship with. Like many experiments, I had to adapt fairly quickly to stop greater damage to my reputation.


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Then, large groups. Internally, you bet we schedule them all for Thursday! I'm the boss there. Externally, though, that becomes a real problem. There's no quicker way to become an asshole than to say to a large group, "Hey! At the inconvenience of everyone else in the group, I need to force you to meet on Thursday."

Again, I had to switch and adapt. At first, I tried hosting most of my meetings on Thursdays, with an overflow day being Monday. That worked for 95% of the cases, but there were still the one or two people/groups who magically didn't have any availability on Monday or Thursday. I had to modify again. What about Friday? Apparently that was even more hated than the Monday/Thursday schedule was - people really, really hate meetings on Friday.

It took a little trial and error before finding exactly what worked for me, but I finally nailed it. Now, I designate two days for meetings - an internal day (which always falls on Thursday), and an external day, which can be any day of the week. The caveat - as soon as one external meeting is booked, all other external meetings have to fall on the same day, so I can bunch them together. If anyone else outside of Howdy Interactive that I'm meeting with doesn't have the space to meet on that same day, the we push them to next week in the schedule, where they get to pick the day of the week I have external meetings. That continues on, in perpetuity. And it works!

To wrap up, I wanted to drop some statistics on my meetings below since I started the experiment. You'll notice that I had weeks where most of my meetings were on other days - that's how some experiments have to work, unfortunately:

  • Week of October 26th
    • 6 Thursday Meetings
    • 5 Meetings On Other Days
  • Week of November 2nd
    • 3 Thursday Meetings
    • 1 Meetings On Other Days
  • Week of November 2nd
    • 3 Thursday Meetings
    • 1 Meetings On Other Days
  • Week of November 9th
    • 4 Thursday Meetings
    • 15 Meetings On Other Days
  • Week of November 16th
    • 4 Thursday Meetings
    • 7 Meetings On Other Days
  • Week of November 23rd
    • Thanksgiving Week, No Meetings
  • Week of November 30th
    • 6 Thursday Meetings
    • 7 Meetings On Other Days
  • Week of December 7th
    • 3 Thursday Meetings
    • 3 Meetings On Other Days
  • Week of December 14th
    • 3 Thursday Meetings
    • 3 Meetings On Other Days
  • Week of December 21st
    • Christmas Week, No Meetings
  • Week of December 28th
    • 3 Thursday Meetings
    • 1 Meetings On Other Days
  • Week of January 4th
    • 3 Thursday Meetings
    • 3 Meetings On Other Days
  • Week of January 11th
    • 5 Thursday Meetings
    • 2 Meetings On Other Days
  • Week of January 18th
    • 3 Thursday Meetings
    • 4 Meetings On Other Days
  • Week of January 25th
    • 3 Thursday Meetings
    • 2 Meetings On Other Days
  • Week of February 1st
    • Free Week, No Meetings
  • Week of February 8th
    • 2 Thursday Meetings
    • 4 Meetings On Other Days
  • Week of February 15th
    • 4 Thursday Meetings
    • 1 Meetings On Other Days
  • Week of February 22nd
    • 5 Thursday Meetings
    • 2 Meetings On Other Days
  • Week of March 1st
    • 6 Thursday Meetings
    • 5 Meetings On Other Days
  • Week of March 8th
    • 7 Thursday Meetings
    • 4 Meetings On Other Days
  • Week of March 15th
    • 3 Thursday Meetings
    • 5 Meetings On Other Days
  • Week of March 22nd
    • 2 Thursday Meetings
    • 3 Meetings On Other Days