t’s the nature of my job that I meet with a lot of people. Sometimes it’s students who want to find out more about Community Management, often it’s entrepreneurs, and many times it’s someone I’ve never met in person before. So when I stumbled upon Y Combinator startup Noteleaf in an article I was excited by the idea. The startup promises to help you always know who you’re meeting, something I definitely need help with.
It’s a simple concept – you schedule a meeting in your Google Calendar, and Noteleaf sends you a text message 10 minutes before your meeting with a link to a mobile profile about the person you’re meeting with. But the beauty isn’t the reminder – after all, everyone can access their calendar on their phone. The thing that makes Noteleaf so genius is its integration with additional services.
Noteleaf integrates with LinkedIn, so the mobile profile includes the person’s photo, job description, past experience, education, and related connections (just in case you want to know who you know that also knows that person). It also shows their last few Tweets if they have that account hooked up to their LinkedIn profile. It also integrates with Google Maps to show you the location of your meeting, and gives you the option of seeing your last e-mail exchanges in your Gmail in case you need to cancel or clarify something. Noteleaf also enhances your Google calendar with more information about the person you’re meeting, in case you don’t have access to your phone right before your meeting.
The only downside I’ve encountered is that it sends you a text message with a meeting reminder before each and every meeting in your calendar that includes a person – so I got a reminder on the weekend about a friend DJing, and another social event. I wish there was a way to distinguish meetings from social events or team meetings, so I could determine which ones actually require a reminder. But overall this is an extremely handy tool that has made it easier to do last-minute research before you meet with someone. Oh, and it also makes it that much easier to pick the person I’m meeting with out of the crowd at a coffee shop – no awkward “hi are you Tony?” questions to strangers again.