10 Tips To Stop Email Overload – STP020

Episode 20 –  This week we’re showing you how to get in control of your inbox. Two options for you – pick any of the tips you like and apply them individually, or apply them all and get to ‘INBOX ZERO’ every day. In the first few minutes we look at why email is not necessarily helping us, and then in part two we show you 10 things you can do differently.

Some of the stuff in there is:

PART 1 – 01:33

  • Who Elwood Edwards is
  • Why e-mail is different now than it was in 1989
  • The Radicati Group Estimate 269 Bn emails sent a day – in this article
  • Why e-mail is no respecter of hierarchy, time or our priorities
  • The Daily Mail claim email is taking up over 2 hours a day – article here
  • The Huffington Post claim it’s taking up over 6 hours a day – article here
  • Lifehacker explain why it can take over 20 minutes to get interrupted concentration back – here
  • The CTO who learned that email was costing his company the equivalent of a Learjet – article here
  • We ask – do you want one whole working day back every month?
  • Where some of my solutions have come from:

PART 2 – 09:08

  • How to clear your inbox
    1. Frame of mind – treat email like post, it’s a task to get done so you can get back to your job, it isn’t your job
    2. Process emails don’t read them – what’s the verb, what’s the action, be clear on what you need to do, and when, and then put it into a system
    3. 2 minute rule – if you can complete the action in 2 minutes, do it
    4. Notifications – turn them off, and process mail at structured times in the day
    5. Multiple folders –  get rid
    6. Set up two folders – Action and Awaiting Response
    7. Challenge expectations – especially your own. Would you prefer to be someone who is productive, or someone who has a reputation for responding to emails
    8. Don’t accept other people passing their urgency onto you – make your own decisions about whether the content is important and/or urgent – (don’t forget there’s a difference)
    9. Send fewer emails –  consider other methods of communication
    10. Avoid cc and reply all – unless you want ten emails back for the price of one
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