Your schedule needs to remain flexible enough that others can find time with you if they need to, but also needs to get defended at the right times so that you get the things done that you care about.
Reclaim knows how important this kind of flexibility is, and so we take a pretty unique approach to blocking time on your calendar.
What exactly is Free and Busy time?
Before we dive into how Reclaim works, here's a quick primer on Free and Busy time as it relates to your calendar.
When you create an event on your calendar, the most typical default is for it to show as Busy. That is, when someone goes to book time with you, they will see the time as unavailable. The most common example of this is using Google's Find a Time feature, where you can view your colleagues' calendars to book time with them.
A lesser-known feature in Google Calendar is Free time: essentially, adding an event to your calendar that shows up to you but not to others. You can see this option when creating an event in Google Calendar:
What does this have to do with Reclaim?
Reclaim leverages Free and Busy signals on your calendar to keep your time flexible.
When events are added to your calendar by Reclaim, they will be frequently added as Free initially and then flip to Busy as your day fills up or as time draws nearer to the start time of the event.
This means that you'll see a number of events on your calendar that you can see, but your colleagues won't until they flip to Busy. The main benefit of this, as we've mentioned, is flexibility: keeping you available until you're truly not anymore.
Here's a look at how this might work in practice for some events created by Reclaim for lunch and catching up on email:
As you can see, time is initially added to your calendar as Free -- visible only to you -- and then flipped to Busy as your day gets busier.
There's a lot that goes into how Reclaim does this, including settings that you can customize. You can learn more about it here.
Reclaim also leverages Free/Busy signals for deciding when your time gets blocked to others for events from your personal calendar. For example, if you're invited to an event on your personal calendar, Reclaim will add a block on your work calendar but will mark it as Free until you actually RSVP Yes or Maybe to the event -- then it gets marked as Busy.