7 Tips to Help Busy Executive Assistants Save Time

x.ai schedules meetings for busy professionals everywhere, including those of you who are managing other people’s calendars. x.ai can work alongside executive assistants to alleviate some of the biggest headaches in their day: Finding compatible times for busy people to meet, hunting down RSVPs, and sending reminders ahead of these meetings. 

Here are 7 tips to help executive assistants save time and get the most out of x.ai:

1. Ensure you and your executives are signed up for x.ai

Even if your executives aren’t planning to log into the tool themselves, it’s important that everyone has connected their calendars to x.ai. This allows our powerful AI to compare availability and preferences, ensuring that meetings only happen when you want them to.

We recommend you and your executives sign up under one team, which lets you manage conference rooms and add your company’s logo to emails (among other benefits!). You’ll also be able to have both accounts billed on the same credit card.

2. Customize your and your executives’ Scheduling Defaults

Customize your scheduling preferences

Everyone has preferences for when they do (and don’t) attend meetings. After you and your executive sign up for x.ai, you’ll each need to customize your Scheduling Defaults, especially the settings for when you both want to be available for meetings.

3. Schedule meetings over email

Let’s walk through a scenario that should be familiar: Your executive asks you to schedule a meeting with 2 people to happen sometime next week. (You don’t need to join them.)

Whether you respond to an existing email or start a new email, you simply need to ensure all of the meeting participants are on the email thread, then copy in the x.ai scheduling assistant to request the meeting.

An example of an email handover could look like this: “Amy, please find time for a 40 min long MS Teams meeting between Adrianne, Jen, and Alex next week. Call this: ‘Initial Specification’ and make me optional.”

Confirm your meeting details and start scheduling

A confirmation email will be sent just to you, giving you the opportunity to add more details or confirm immediately. The x.ai scheduling assistant will then respond to each participant with available times to choose from.

Times are sent to your guest to choose from

By setting yourself as “optional,” x.ai will ignore your calendar and availability for scheduling purposes, but you’ll still receive the invitation when it is sent. This ensures you stay in control of the meeting. You’ll also automatically be notified if any guests request the meeting be rescheduled (more on this below).

Pro Tip: When meetings are scheduled with multiple x.ai users, they will not need to take any further action as their availability and preferences are known. This is why we encourage you to create x.ai accounts for all of the executives you support as well as the people they meet with most often.

Mega-Pro Tip: When you sign up with an x.ai Team plan, you can opt to have our AI scheduling tool automatically see the “busy” timeslots of coworkers who share their calendar information with the x.ai user. This means we can treat them as defacto x.ai users: The meeting will be scheduled automatically if it’s between coworkers and x.ai customers, without anyone needing to choose times. If a meeting includes x.ai customers, coworkers, and third parties, our AI scheduling tool will only propose times to the external guests, and those times will be based on the x.ai customer and coworkers’ availability. (Read more about Instant Coworker Scheduling)

4. Preview scheduling emails before they’re sent

If you prefer, you can follow a similar workflow using the Create tool to kick-start scheduling directly without initiating over email or Slack message.

Create a meeting on x.ai instead

When you add the meeting details into our Create tool, you can preview the exact emails that will be sent to each participant and make any adjustments if necessary before hitting “Start scheduling.”

Preview scheduling emails before they're sent

5. Automate follow-ups and meeting reminders  

When you initiate a meeting with x.ai, our tool will send follow-ups to guests reminding them to choose a time. You can customize how many follow-ups we send and how often, or let us handle the follow-ups automatically based on how many days there are until the meeting date range passes.

Stay on top of pending meetings with the Daily Meeting Prep email

You’ll always see exactly who has and hasn’t responded, in case you want to do some one-on-one nudging, too. Pending meetings are included in your Daily Meeting Prep email and also when you log into my.x.ai. Once every guest has selected times, our AI scheduling tool chooses one that works for everyone and automatically sends the invite out.

Similarly, we’ll also automatically send reminders the night before a meeting when it was scheduled 10+ days in advance.

6. Easily cancel or reschedule meetings when conflicts arise

When a meeting needs to be canceled or rescheduled, our scheduling tool makes it easy for anyone to initiate the process. Every guest in the meeting has access to the calendar invite, which includes a link to Reschedule or Cancel the meeting.

Reschedule links are included on the calendar invite

7. Block out focus time 

When your executive asks you to block two hours for focus work, you can schedule a meeting with them and, again, mark yourself as optional.

schedule meetings over Slack

Our AI tool will disregard your availability, find an open two-hour block of time, and send the invite.

Bonus Tip: Copy and Paste Times for Executives

We detailed this tip in our Time Hacks series of articles, but it’s so good that it is also worth a mention here. When you are on the x.ai Team Plan, you can access Team Calendar Pages, which are shared among your team. By creating a “shared” Calendar Page with only one team member associated with it and using our Copy Times feature, you can quickly grab a block of time for your executive!

Above is an example of a Team Calendar Page with only one person associated with it. Now anyone on the team who is an admin can access the copy times feature for this page and quickly copy a block of a single colleague’s availability.

Once you have copied available times for your desired date options, you can paste them directly into an email and offer real-time availability to your executive’s meeting guests!

x.ai = Real time-savings

x.ai provides quantifiable value to our users and the people they meet with. When boomtime CEO Bill Bice signed his entire team up for x.ai in 2018, he quickly saw an immediate impact. His salespeople gained back the 4.8 hours every week they had been spending scheduling their own meetings. Bice also saw a boost to his own and his executive assistant’s productivity by using x.ai to schedule his meetings. His executive assistant saves 5-10 hours each week that was redirected to higher-order tasks. Win-win-win!

What would you do with an extra 5-10 hours every week? Sign up for x.ai today and find out.