Managing Email EffectivelyStrategies for Taming Your Inbox
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Also, explain to your colleagues/boss/clients that you only check email at certain times, and that they can call you or use instant messaging if the matter is really urgent.
... during the day can be an effective way to keep your inbox at manageable levels.
However, the constant interruption and distraction that comes from it can dramatically lower your productivity, and disrupt your ability to enter a state of flow when working on high value projects.
These are internal notifications, emails from the corporate office or from team members who want to keep us "in the loop."
If you see your name in the "cc" field instead of the "To" field, chances are it's an FYI email. Consider filing it in a "To Read" folder, and tackle it when you have time.
Set up a simple filing system to help manage your mail: You could use broad categories titled "Action Items," "Waiting," "Reference," and "Archives." If you're able to stay on top of your folders – particularly "Action" and "Waiting" folders – you could use them as an informal To-Do List for the day.
The advantage of specific folders for processing email is that it makes it easier to search for past mail.
Most email programs, such as Outlook and Gmail, allow you to establish "Rules" that sort email into a particular folder as soon as it comes in.
If you regularly receive email such as newsletters, blogs and article feeds, you could re-route these to another email address, or use rules, so that they're instantly delivered to a particular folder.
This will help keep your primary inbox clear, and they'll be in one place, ready to read at a convenient time.
If certain team members regularly send you long, drawn-out emails, let them know. Tell them gently but firmly that because of the demand on your time, you'd appreciate emails no longer than a paragraph or two. Anything longer than that should warrant a phone call. Alternatively, they could drop by your office for a discussion.
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think of every email you get as either something you need to take action on, track, or refer to later.
Every time you open a conversation, decide right away what to do with it. D...
There’s no “definitive” system. The best framework is the one that works for you. Ideally, it should model your work style, supporting the way you work. Bonus points if it’s low-maintenance, fast to set up, and adaptable as your work changes.
Some people like to use folders with specific actions (do, delegate, reply), while others prefer the deadline-driven approach (today, tomorrow, next week).
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Even though email messaging has provided us with better communication, we have a hard time managing every message that enters our inbox.
Finding better ways to organize your inbox will benefi...
Trying to locate an email you want to respond to can be very time-consuming.
Mark the email you want to respond to later as "unread." It is easier to find between all your other messages.
Getting out of the habit of checking email frequently can be tough.
Check and respond to emails twice a day at a specific time. The rest of the day you can be dedicated to your work and not lose focus because of incoming messages.
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More than one-quarter of a worker's day on average is spent answ...
... to read and respond to email. Don’t leave your email program open all day long. Alerts from incoming messages can interrupt your work flow. Instead, schedule specific blocks of time throughout the day for checking your email.
You might even try marking your calendar and setting your availability to “busy.” If necessary, turn off your cellphone and shut your office door to prevent interruptions.
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Spend 5 minutes each morning preparing your task list to have only accomplishable tasks that fit the time you have available. Keep other tasks on a holding list for another day.
Set a timer for 15 minutes, shut out the world and concentrate with intense focus on one and only one task. Closing your door and turning off your phone and internet are specially important.
Recognize that not everything in your list must be done. When in doubt, delete it from your list; if it is important you’ll eventually add it back.
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Phones take over many duties in our day-to-day lives and so they occupy portions of our attentional capacity.
Studies indicate that regular phone and computer users that physically get away from devices, theirs or not, have an increase in available cognitive capacity and that doing so is the best way to make sure you won’t have anxiety over whatever you might be missing on it.
It's the practice of planning out every moment of your day in advance and dedicating specific time “blocks” for certain tasks and responsibilities.
When you fill your c...
By scheduling every minute of your day you not only guard against distraction but also multiply your focus.
Also, focusing on one task at a time can make you up to 80% more productive than splitting your attention across multiple tasks.
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Create the following 2 folders:
Unsubscribe from every list that doesn’t offer solid value for your business.
Interrupting a task with notifications leads to a loss of concentration and a decline in productivity levels.
Feel free to set up an autoresponder re-directing all urgent matters to your phone.
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