How much is email overload and email mis-use costing you?
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Today is Information Overload Day when around the world people are trying to combat this silent disease which is zapping our energy. Email is one of the major contributors to information overload. (Although social media now too plays a significant part.)
It’s easy to improve one’s own personal email management but to start really reducing email and hence information overload means engaging your colleagues and then the whole enterprise.
One way is to have an email good behaviour charter to which everyone adheres as closely as possible. Ours is called the Nine Ps of Email Best Practice. Anyone who has attended either a Brilliant Email or Take Control of Your Inbox session will be familiar with it.
Here are the five Ps which can help you make the most difference on Information Overload Day by reducing the rounds of email ping pong and unnecessary emails.
Adopt these five Ps of good email behaviour across your working groups not just on Information Overload Day but everyday. This will significantly help reduce information (and email) overload which has become a burden on not just business but often our social lives too.
For more resources for Information Overload Day click here.
How did your inbox cope with your absence? Unless you packed it up properly, it might be suffering with acute email overload. Take heart. The key is to prioritise your time and decide what is really worthy of your attention. Which emails must you answer? What is no longer an issue and therefore to reply is wasting both your time and the recipients. What really does not deserve your attention and can be deleted?
Here is a seven point fail-safe plan to help you cool it down and maybe even reach inbox zero.
If all else fails, delete the lot and declare ‘Email Bankruptcy’ safe in the knowledge that if anything was that important the sender will soon follow-up! When they do, bluff and say their email must have got lost.
Game, set and match. Holiday email backlog cleared. And for you ‘inbox zero’ and a clean inbox.
Need more help keeping on top of your email? Call us now and let us run a ‘Brilliant Email Management’ workshop for your and your colleagues.
In an attempt to reduce email overload, increasingly organisations are banning using email for internal communications. But is this really the solution or is it a sledge hammer to crack a nut? For some the ban is absolute and others it is on specific days. The most high profile being Atos. Others include Hatton Housing and Rarely Impossible ( a small Dorset-based digital media company). Those adopting this path have turned to alternative platforms such as instant messaging, social media-based chat environments. By and large too the companies have all been small to medium sized and based in one office. The exception is Atos but they are developing a dedicated internal communications platform.
Responses have been mixed, some have seen a genuine improvement in people’s performance whilst others have found drawbacks. Not least, employees are now just faced with another set of digital distraction.
There is no doubting that email overload and misuse is one of the biggest causes of stress and lower productivity, corporate email overload is often the symptom of deeper problems. Reducing email overload and generating genuine improvements in communications and performance is really about setting the right management and business culture. Then one can start to look at how email and the other multitude of social media platforms can be used.
Currently with so much uncertainty over Brexit, it is not surprising that many people’s inboxes are fuller than ever with unnecessary chatter. It would not therefore be unexpected if more business executives jumped on the ‘ban all internal email’ band wagon. However, without careful consideration as to what is really causing the email overload, banning all internal email might just be a step backwards.
Being alerted when each and every new email arrives is now accepted as one of the major drains on our productivity along wit the general email overload it causes. Working efficiently means turning off all those new email alerts.
Ah but ‘I need to see emails from X as they arrive’ is usually the most common rebuff. Well you can be selective. Write a rule which does indeed alert you to such new arrivals. Here is how for Outlook users.
Now you can focus on the task in hand without being distracted by every new as it arrives, and just allow emails from X pop-up as they arrive.
For more tips like this to help you improve your personal productivity and work-life balance see ‘Taking Control of Your Inbox‘