Showing items tagged with "Reduce business email overload" - 4 found.
Posted Wednesday January 23rd, 2019, 11:30 am by Dr Monica Seeley
Day 3 – How to Reduce Email Overload
Develop an uncanny ability to be selectively ignorant. Timothy Ferriss.
Stressed by business email overload? What is the effect of email overload on your mental health? Studies show its profound. During day three of clean inbox week, we use email management techniques to reduce the the business email overload so that and you continue to enjoy a clean inbox. Deleting simply is not an option. You have be proactive and keep all unwanted emails out of your inbox and reduce the number of times you check for new email.
Step 1 – Prioritise each new email you receive today
How many of the emails you receive do you really need? Triage your emails as you deal with them. Ask yourself ‘Do I really need this email?’ ‘How useful is this to me?’ For more guidance on prioritising see Brilliant Email chapter 3 and ‘Taking Control of Your Inbox” if you are a PA or EA.
Step 2 – Stop all non-essential emails from reaching your inbox
For all those low priority emails, either get yourself off the sender’s list or automatically move them out of your inbox so they don’t distract you from the really important ones. Your inbox should be your ‘work in hand’ just like an old fashioned in-tray. Ways to reduce the incoming email traffic and hence email overload are:
- Ask the sender to remove you from their list.
- Use rules to send them automatically to a folder/Trash.
Click here to see how to write rules that allow you see only the important emails (and not waste time on email distractions dealing with the lower priority ones).
Step 3 – Reduce the number of times you deal with email
How often do you currently check for new emails? When was the last time you received an email which would mean a catastrophe if you did not respond for about an hour? Give yourself a break from the inbox to allow yourself to focus on the task in-hand for at least 30 minutes and preferably one hour. Try not deal with your email too late into the night as that can seriously effect your quality of sleep and your work-life balance.
Dare to share
Share your progress; Email; Facebook: Twitter (using #cleaninbox) There are two prizes today. One for the person who has made the best progress reducing the number of times they check their email and one for the person who has reduced the volume of email they receive most substantially (a copy of ‘Brilliant Email‘ and ‘Taking Control of Your Inbox’ written especially for PAs, EAs and VAs).
For more resource
Follow me on Twitter using #cleaninbox.
Join our Facebook page.
Do you feel others colleagues would benefit from help cleaning out their inboxes? Why not either join them up to this week’s programme or ask MesmoConsultancy to run one of our Brilliant Email Management master classes?
Posted Tuesday January 8th, 2019, 10:26 pm by Dr Monica Seeley
Here are my top 10 tips (and resolutions) to reduce business email overload in 2019. These tips will enable you to take control of your inbox instead of allowing it to control your working day. This will enable you to improve your performance and well-being and reduce the risks of an email borne cyber attack through stupidity.
- Educate colleagues (internally and externally) not to expect an instant reply.
- Avoid sending ‘naked’ emails (ie ones with no proper salutation and sign-off).
- Never send an email when under the influence of alcohol, drugs.
- Always attach first then write the email content.
- Clean out the inbox regularly and move out all emails more than one month old.
- When using your mobile device on the move as a diary etc, lock the screen with a photo of the day’s schedule.
- Use ‘Google Translate’ when sending emails to an international audience to check the content translates properly.
- Reduce the number of emails you send by at least 20%.
- Limit the number of times your inbox is checked for emails each day.
- Have a digital detox at least once a fortnight.
What are your New Year’s resolutions to reduce the level of business email overload in 2019?
Posted Monday December 3rd, 2018, 6:43 pm by Dr Monica Seeley
As IORG Social Media Chair, for the past four weeks my theme has been whether or not business email overload will still be a problem in 2019 and if so can we reduce it. Thinking outside the inbox will a key way to reduce business email overload in 2019. (A shorter version was published on the IORG website).
Thinking outside the inbox is neither easy nor intuitive, There are now multiple excellent other ways to communicate electronically from instant messaging via Skype for Business or What’s App to sophisticated collaborative tools like Slack or SharePoint. Sadly, what often happens is that organisations adopt alternatives to email with no clear guidelines on what to use when. With no clear conventions and frameworks all that happens is that email overload turns into a severe attack of information overload because now you have at least three if not four or five different channels to check.
In the absence of organisational guidelines, here is a simple framework which others with whom I have worked have found very useful. Its called the PNPD Framework for Thinking Outside the Inbox
For any form of communication, there are basically four factors to consider when deciding which medium to use.
- Privacy – what level of privacy is needed?
- Numbers – is it one-to-one or one-to-many
- Permanency – do you need an audit trail of the exchange?
- Delicacy – how important is it to be able to see the other persons reaction as you converse so as to moderate what you say accordingly?
Here are two examples of how to apply the PNPD framwork to think outside the inbox to reduce email and information overload.
Scenario 1 – Conversation
Private between two people, delicate but a permanent record of the final discussion will be needed (eg performance appraisal, salary negotiation, disciplinary meeting).
Best option – conversation (face-to-face if possible otherwise virtual) followed up by an email confirming the discussion.
Privacy is high: Numbers are low: Permanency is high: Delicacy is high.
Scenario 2 – Instant messaging
A public message for several people if not the whole office which if not seen here and now is of no relevance later. It does not matter how people react. For example, testing the fire alarm, cakes for your birthday.
Best option – Instant messaging.
Privacy is low: Numbers are high: Permanency is low: Delicacy is low.
For more information on the PNPD Thinking Outside the Inbox Framework see Taking Control of Your Inbox.
It is my view that email is here to stay and the real challenge is how to manage our use of it better. Clearly one way is to manage the actual flow of email traffic in and out of your inbox more efficiently. In relation to the former this means being brave and thinking outside the inbox and consciously choosing to use an alternative.
What is your view?
Posted Wednesday November 21st, 2018, 9:42 pm by Dr Monica Seeley
A constant problem associated with business email overload and hence information overload is picking out the important emails from all the dross. Deleting the less important ones often results in deleting those you really wanted, especially when using a mobile device. They key is to remember it is your inbox and no one (at least no email) should arrive without your permission.
See the path to your inbox as an information highway along which emails travel but you and you alone decide which travel in the fast lane and arrive directly in your inbox and which travel in the slow lane via a width restrictor (folder).
Over the next week if you truly want to reduce your business email overload intake, do an inbox audit to benchmark your email intake using this simple five step exercise.
- Review each email you receive and assign it a basic priority – high; medium or low.
- For the emails you want, decide whether they travel in either the fast lane direct to your inbox or the slow lane via a folder.
- Write rules for all those which are to travel in the slow lane to divert them away from the inbox to a safe holding place.
- For all the low priority emails try to find a way to stop them arriving in the first place (eg unsubscribe, tell the sender to remove you from their list).
- For all the high priority emails decide whether or not you need to be alerted when they arrive. If so implement a suitable mechanism.
You must be absolutely ruthless otherwise at the end of the week you will still be suffering with business email and information overload and your inbox will remain heavily congested.
This blog is part of the series being written for IORG on whether or not business email overload will still be a problem in 2019.