MPI Perspective - June 2009 - (Page 18)

member p ear l s By Birgess Angelus, CMP Principal B Line Events Getting Things Done Meeting-Planner Style Do you wish you could have more control over your e-mail inbox and even your own thoughts? It’s inherent in every meeting planner to be task oriented and organized. We have to be in order to get through each day. There are many nights we are haunted by thoughts of unanswered e-mails, unfinished details and deadlines. We are continually challenged by executing an event while planning for the next. Relief came knocking on my door the day The David Allen Company approached B Line to plan its First Annual Summit. I quickly read “Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress Free Productivity” by David Allen to learn about the company, but much to my surprise I learned a new way of organizing my career and life. I have always considered myself organized, but the GTD method takes organization to a new, stress-free level. The most useful tool I learned deals with e-mail. Everyone knows how to use e-mail, but it doesn’t come with instructions on how to use it best. I had folders where I would file my completed e-mails, but still found my inbox full and cluttered. From the GTD method, I learned to answer e-mails that take less than two minutes immediately and then file them. Any e-mail that takes over two minutes I now categorize in one of the following folders: @Action, @Deferred, @ Waiting For. Placing the @ symbol before these folders organizes them at the top of the e-mail filing system where they are easy to find. Once I clear my inbox to empty, I then go back to the @Action folder to spend time and attention on the e-mails that require it. Items that are not time sensitive are filed in @Deferred and answered when I have extra time and lastly, the items that I am waiting for answers on, I put in @Waiting For file. Once a day I go through the @Waiting For to make sure I have received the answers I need and follow up on the ones I have not with ease. The GTD method also gave me permission to treat my personal life and professional life with equal priority. Items like ‘pick up the dry cleaning’ and ‘fax signed BEOs’ fl ash through my mind at any location at any time. I learned to carry something with me at all times and write these items down to get them out of my mind. Once my mind is freed from these lists, I can better concentrate and be present in the moment. The constant details and time-sensitive tasks of the events business can be overwhelming. It is nice to know that there are methods out there that can help manage this. The GTD method works in other industries, but is a slam-dunk for the events industry. Go to for more information. ● Birgess Moore, CMP, is Principal, B Line Events, a full-service meeting and event company that delivers global expertise to a diverse client base ranging from Fortune 500 enterprises to small and medium-sized businesses. She can be reached at (415) 292-0797 or 18 | MPINCCperspective | VOL. 27, NO. 6

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of MPI Perspective - June 2009

MPI Perspective - June 2009
President’s Message
Meetings Mean Business
Survival Guide for Planners
Survival Guide for Suppliers
Connecting with — Sean Kirklen, CMP
Member Pearls
Chapter Chatter
Sponsor Spotlight
Index to Advertisers

MPI Perspective - June 2009