Daily Meeting Agendas in Evernote

I've mentioned before that I practically live in Evernote.  One workflow that I've found especially helpful is to have an agenda sent directly from iCal to Evernote using Automator, so that I can log notes from my meetings in one easily searchable place.  I adapted a workflow that I found at macworld.com

To start, create a notebook in Evernote where your daily agendas will land.  I named this notebook "Agendas."

Then open Automator, and select the "Calendar Alarm" option.  This will create a workflow that runs by your calendar at an appointed time.

You'll want to create a workflow that will find a specific calendar (step 1), filter that calendar (step 2), summarize the events (step 3), create a mail message (step 4), and send the message (step 5).  Here's a description of the workflow step-by-step...

Step 1 - Find Calendars

In the "Applications" library (on the far left column of Automator), choose "Calendar."  You'll notice several application choices - click and drag "Find Calendars" to the workspace.  Edit this selection so that you Find calendars where: All of the following are true: Title contains yourcalendarname

Step 2 - Filter Calendar Events

In the Calendar library, click and drag "Filter Calendar Items" to the workspace.  Edit this selection so that you Filter events where: All of the following are true: Date Starting is today.

Step 3 - Event Summary

In the Calendar library, click and drag "Event Summary" to the workspace.  No need to edit anything here.

Take a look at my example of the workflow steps 1-3 below...

Step 4 - Create a Mail Message

In the "Applications" library (on the far left column of Automator), choose "Mail."  You'll notice several application choices - click and drag "New Mail Message" to the workspace.  Enter your unique Evernote email address, and a subject line.  I chose to call mine "Daily Meetings Agenda - Date Month, Year"  To enter the date and day variables, click "Variables" and click and drag "Current day," "Current Month" and "Current Year" into the subject line.  I also added @Agendas so that the note goes directly into the "Agendas" notebook in Evernote. I recently edited this and added #taskclone to my subject line as well - this way, I don't have to select the taskclone tag if I suddenly find that I have a task in my daily notes.

I have chosen to leave the message block blank.

Step 5 - Send Outgoing Message

In the Mail library, click and drag "Send Outgoing Message."

You can test this workflow by clicking "Run" (it's the play button on the top-right of the Automator window), and you should get a Daily Agenda into Evernote.  (Excuse the blackouts - I had to redact private information).

Automating the Workflow

When you click "Save" in Automator, it will prompt you to add this event to your calendar.  The default is a one-time event, so you'll need to go to the Calendar App and edit how the event recurs, and what time you want the agenda sent (mine sends at 5:30 a.m., M_F).

Working with the Agendas Workflow

Each morning, my agenda is sent to Evernote.  When I am at a meeting, I am able to immediately take notes. And since I have lately added the #taskclone tag to the subject line of the outgoing emails, if I do add a task in the meetings, I can be sure that they immediately sync to my task manager.

Please let me know whether this works for you.  Even more valuable, what modifications have you made to this workflow that improve it even further?

Posted on April 6, 2015 and filed under Calendar Management, Evernote.