Disclaimer: if calendar reminders work for you and you find them useful, that’s great… I’m happy for you. Each to their own. My personal opinion is that they’re a pointless, annoying distraction. This has nothing to do with Outlook itself, just the default setting that has been implemented. Okay, let’s begin…

  1. I know what’s in my calendar. I don’t need reminding. Proof: I remove reminders from all of my appointments and I’m usually the first person on the conference call. That’s not me adopting a holier-than-thou attitude, it’s a fact.
  2. I get my e-mail / calendar on five separate devices… laptop, tablet, iMac, Windows Phone and iPod. When the reminder pops up it does so in five places. I don’t need that.
  3. Here’s the big one. Let’s say someone has invited me to a meeting in London, or maybe even Edinburgh. A 15-minute reminder is pointless. If I’m not already in London (or Edinburgh) a 15-minute reminder isn’t a big help. I can’t get from Camberley or Reading to London in 15 minutes. If I am already in London (or Edinburgh) the chances are that I’ll have travelled to that city in order to attend the meeting… it’s the reason I’m there. So I don’t need a reminder.

This isn’t an Outlook problem, but unfortunately 15 minutes is set as a default in my workplace. I’ve turned the option off, but everyone else sends appointments with the 15-minute reminder switched on. I wish they wouldn’t…