I must admit that while emails are obviously phenomenally efficient and fast as a mode of communication, there are days when I dread opening up my email in the morning, only to be faced with an avalanche of useless junk – I’m sure you’ve had days like that too? I’ve seen these types of hints before but when I saw the name behind this one, I was intrigued. So here they are. I would love to hear back from you to see if any of these make any sense.
1. Respond quickly: That’s obvious and his logic makes sense – especially from a stakeholder management perspective. However, there are times when I need to let things percolate in my mind so I may deliberately want to slow down my response to send a subtle message.
2. Be crisp: Yup – could not agree more and one that I struggle with. He quotes Elmore Leonard, “I leave out the parts that people skip”.
3. Clean out your inbox: I find this very ironic given the author of Google is probably responsible for half the email I get and regardless of how many filters I set up – I still get tons of email that I have no interest in. So Eric, you could do your part to help out here???
4. LIFO: Another obvious one but I have found relevant emails when I’ve gone through older emails in my humongous inbox looking for something else – I bet you have too?
5. Be a “Router”: This basically refers to forwarding information to others who will find it relevant. The issue here is that you are defining what is relevant for someone else. I know that being the recipient of many such forwards that a lot of them I really had no interest in but someone assumed that I did.
6. Don’t use bcc: Hmmmmmm, Not sure I understand why or agree with it. Do you?
7. Don’t YELL: I’ll agree except when you are really frustrated with customer service reps who have screwed up your cigar order for the 5th time – then it’s time to YELL!! Or when you are trying to get your kid’s attention.
8. Make it easy to follow up on requests – And when they don’t for the 5th time, then is it okay to YELL?
9. Help yourself to search: I found this to be the most intriguing because a lot of time is wasted by all of us in searching for that one email that we know we got but cannot find right now and need it right away. The Search function is the least utilized and one that could save a ton of time if we learned how to do it better. Using descriptive words and then knowing how to use them in your search is fairly obvious but one that we often ignore.
What is you experience with email? Any long term frustrations? Helpful hints for the rest of us? Would love to get an email back from you.