Clicks & Notes

17 February 2005

Managing Email

Some links that I’ve come across in the last while…

43 Folders - Five fast email productivity tips

  • simple and to the point:
    • Shut off auto-check
    • Pick off easy ones – if you can respond right away in one or two lines, do it now
    • Write less – keep it short, quick, and to the point
    • Cheat – use templates and boilerplate responses for common inquiries
    • Be honest – if you know you’re not going to deal with an email, just get rid of it

John Porcaro: mktg@msft - Microsoft’s Email Culture

  • Porcaro talks about the high volumes of email that staff at Microsoft contend with, shares a few of his own email management tricks, including:
    • your inbox is not your to-do list
    • block out time to “process” email
    • don’t use email as your filing system
    • don’t use email as a CMS – put content that needs to be shared in a place accessible to all

NPR - Overcoming E-Mail Overload at Work

  • includes an audio interview with Marilyn Paul, author of It’s Hard To Make a Difference When You Can’t Find Your Keys, who offers several tips for dealing with email effectively at work, including:
    • Meet as a team to review e-mail use. Identify what works, what doesn’t, and why.
    • Don’t deliver bad news in an e-mail message.
    • After two rounds of problem-solving on e-mail, pick up the phone.
    • If you can’t answer a request immediately, let the other party know when you can respond, or if you can’t.
  • there’s also an excerpt of Paul’s book available here (PDF, 122 kb)

Good Experience - Managing Incoming E-mail: What Every User Needs to Know (PDF, 317 kb)

Here is how to manage incoming e-mail: Keep the inbox empty.

  • the report (which is 38 pages long) goes on to include:
    • a walkthrough on how to empty your current inbox
    • tips on how to spot spam in your inbox quickly, so that you can delete it right away
    • suggestions for setting up mail filters
    • instructions on setting up filters in Microsoft Outlook

Conversations with Dina - Spam killing Email - why can’t they learn from IM ?

  • Dina talks about using whitelist applications and has a wishlist for a permission-based contact management protocol/structure for email

BBC News - E-mail is the new database

  • obviously a lot of people could use the tips noted in the preceding articles – as the BBC reports:

    Web-based e-mail services like Hotmail, Yahoo!, Gmail and AOL Mail on the Web are becoming databases by default as a growing number of people use them, to store data and photos so they can retrieve them from anywhere.

Update 18 February 2005: Here’s one more… - How the big names tame e-mail

  • Email secrets of the rich and famous include:
    • don’t read it
    • get an assistant
    • use multiple email addresses
    • use a wireless solution, like a Blackberry, to handle email anytime, anywhere
  • (via Brain Food Blog)

Update #2, 18 February 2005: This just in…

43 Folders - Quick tips on processing your email inbox

  • Merlin Mann follows up on his five email productivity tips (see above) with these notes:

    Processing determines as quickly as possible what, if anything, to do with each piece (in ascending order of urgency and importance):

    • delete it
    • archive it
    • defer it for later response
    • generate an action from it
    • respond to it immediately (if it—literally—will take less than 2 minutes or is so Earth-shattering that it just can’t wait)
⇒ Filed under:  by jen @ 11:35 pm


No comments yet.

RSS feed for comments on this post.

Leave a comment

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.

© Jennifer Vetterli, 2005