Growth in technology has lead to the need for instant gratification. With everything available at the click of a button our patience is dwindling. As a result of this emails can be hard to manage as people often expect an instant response.
The development in technology has been astounding, just 20 years ago iPhones didn’t exist and Spotify was just an idea. Air BnB and Uber were not even considered as possible. Technology has made our lives easier, but also for businesses it has made expectations higher. This is especially true for responding to emails. Here are our top tips for email management:
Instant responses are an unrealistic expectation. You are not a robot. Setting those expectations can be difficult, after all you want to keep your clients happy. Work emails on your phone can then stretch this expectation to be 24/7 rather than just in work time. Think of the effects this may have on yourself and your team. Put yourself first, emails can wait until the morning.
Allocate time for your emails. At 1 Accounts we get a huge volume of emails with Paul and Jade opening their inbox in the morning to occasionally near 100 emails. These can be overwhelming at times especially when you have planned your day to complete other work. That is why we now allocate specific time to deal with them. We have an hour in the morning, 30mins after lunch and then an hour at the end of the day. Emails then get shut down for the time in-between allowing the team to focus.
Email notifications can be a huge distraction. To allow for ‘deep work’ these distractions need to be turned off. This means, turning off the push notifications on you phone and computer. This will allow you to focus on the job in hand, probably resulting in a better job and quicker result. You have allocated time for your emails so you won’t miss anything important and your clients will still be happy.
Sorting your emails is important. We use Karbon as our workflow system, that really helps us with our email management. To sort we scan through the inbox to see if there is any ‘junk’ that can be deleted straight away. This will clear more than you think and make the inbox less overwhelming. We then go through and answer any emails that we know will only take 1-5mins or that you can delegate. If there is an email regarding work that you know a team member is working on, pass it on, you don’t need to deal with it. Anything that will take longer than 1-5mins that you have to deal with gets scheduled into ‘deep work’ as it will require time and focus. Using this method will give your emails structure and efficiency.
So after reading this blog, turn off your push notifications, allocate time for your emails and allow time for ‘deep work’ and focus this should result in a happier team and a happier you.
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