‘As soon as I clear my inbox, a new batch arrives – consequently I spend my time reacting to every new message but not being proactive’.
Does this sound familiar? Our lives are circumscribed around the Blackberry, iPhone, iPad, Android, or any device where one can get online: consequently we spend our waking hours reading, replying, copying and deleting. Is any real work ever done and is this plethora of email really necessary?
However, email is here to stay: so here are my 5 top tips to help you manage it.
- Bin it!
Utilise your inbox for actions that you need to take: then get rid of the rest. Old emails just take up space.
- Get sorted!
After actioning your emails, put them in named folders for quick access. Tidy email folders are a lot easier to handle when you open your in-box.
- Flag it!
Flag important emails so you can see at a glance exactly what needs to be tackled immediately.
- Go off-line!
When you’re trying to concentrate, go off-line. Curiosity may well get the better of you if you can still hear that ‘ping’ telling you an email has arrived – and then it is hard to remember what you were doing before it arrived!
- Less is more!
Keep your emails short and to the point. The less you write, the more likely you’ll get a reply. Write in bullet points and the chances are your answer will be in the same format. However, if you’re just after a chat, then use the phone!
Email is a phenomenal tool for efficient communication. It can take us from one side of the world to the other in an instant but it needs to be managed effectively. So, enjoy being in control of your inbox rather than your in-box being in control of you!
Written by Carole Spiers and reprinted with the kind permission of Gulf News.
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