Even when I have a quick call on my calendar, I always try to block off an hour.
That does a few things:
First – if the person is late to the call (I try never to be late … more on that below) … then you can still talk to the person and not reschedule.
Second — You’ll never have more than 10 meetings scheduled in a day. Which is important for your sanity.
Third — you will also have lots of opportunities to carry out your microtasks (like keeping up on email) throughout the day – because if your meeting only lasts 20 minutes (which is the avg length of my phone meetings), you’ll have another 40 minutes for tasks, meeting follow-ups, etc.
Fourth – you won’t be late for meetings and you’ll be able to respect other’s time as you would want them to respect yours.
I like only have 1-2 meetings / day. One in the morning. One in the afternoon. That leaves me sufficient time to do planning, coaching, meeting preparation, meeting debrief, ad hoc interactions with my team, etc. I cannot imagine having 10 productive meetings in a day…
In government, people schedule meetings for an hour because that is the default and they don’t have to think. If the meeting is over in 20 minutes, we sit and talk for the next 40 minutes.
A waste, but I like your ideas.