Monday, 9 December 2019

How To Do Email Management?

Updated: March 12, 2011 2:58 pm

While email is a great and fastest way for communication, we need to guard against wasting our time by checking emails at frequent intervals. It happens with me quite often and the result is that I spend a lot more on email, than on my work. A large proportion of my time is spent on uncreative and fruitless activities, like searching past mails or deleting or putting them in relevant folders.

                However to tackle this problem, I have devised some plans and propositions, which have helped me and can help others also. Replying to more mails does not mean being more productive. Truly, there is nothing being dynamic or constructive in clearing your inbox before going to bed. Most of us tend to confuse replying to emails with the tasks we should be doing, like writing a book or articles or focussing on other vital tasks.

                Checking on emails frequently is liable to break our chain of thoughts. Many a time in the past and occasionally even now, I check mails several times in a day. Now I do look at the emails, but delete them after once I have glanced at them. Instead of replying to them at one go, I do postpone processing them.

                I deal with them at my most unproductive time. In fact, one way is to raise your filter level of acceptance of emails. Most of them, especially from unknown sources end up in junk mail folder. I do glance at the junk folder and retrieve those, which are relevant to my requirements or needs or about whom I feel that I should reply to them. I have also made it a point not to waste more than five minutes at any mail processing slot. Not all mailers expect a reply to their emails.

                I use 80/20 rule, because it applies to every single area of our lives, including emails I receive or send. The 80/20 rule is an inspiration or a proposition that 20 per cent of inputs are responsible for 80 per cent of the outputs in any situation. Hence, to be effective, we should focus on 20 per cent of inputs that lead to 80 per cent of outputs.

                Depending upon the profession you are engaged in, the world will not collapse if you do not reply to the emails immediately. Email is a tool of work and is not the work itself. It does the work, which in the earlier times used to be done by the postmen.

                You should focus only on those mails, which are helpful to you professionally. The email is a tool and not the end product. The important thing is not to develop an addiction to emails in your life, but help you professionally and personally in your life. Nothing will happen, if you do not reply to some emails immediately or not reply at all. A large majority of promotional mails have no intrinsic value.

                Without an active internet, we cannot have emails. I use internet as a vast store house and a library, where I can get the latest information on any subject. If we are not careful, we can end up wasting time on browsing the sites, which do not help us in any way, in our competency and efficiency. Earlier, I used to subscribe to all kinds of sites. Now, I have unsubscribed, most of them, as otherwise, precious times is wasted in going through a lot of material, which is not relevant to my work at hand. Most of the sites have one bottom-line that is to sell something to you.

                Too many things on your plate, including replying to the emails, telephone calls, can be overwhelming, leading to a state of affairs, which can leave you disconcerted and perturbed. It can also upset your priorities as is stressful to avoid, what needs to be done. Running away from what needs to be done and should be done, also is not only stressful, but takes away our feel good factor and happiness.

                However, it must be borne in mind that what needs to be done, must be done, irrespective of how you feel. We must not allow our emotions to prevail on our life and must live by common sense and logical decisions. This rationale logically applies to all emails, if we overload our life’s inbox with junk or junk mails. We are concerned with our own life and our own problems and not the life of others. Instead of blaming others for flooding us with emails, we should stop blaming others and using excuses avoiding taking action. It is the action taken, which will get us the outcome, we want in our lives.

By Joginder Singh

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