Don’t Let Email Kill Your Productivity

Entrepreneur.com published an article that discusses 10 habits that drain productivity.

Not surprisingly, the first ‘drainer’ on the list is our favorite thing – email. The key point is – if you expect to be productive, you can’t check your email constantly.

The article goes so far as to suggest readers create an auto-responder that lists the hours that emails are checked. We think this may be going a bit too far, but use your best judgement here.

A good best practice to follow is to check your emails early in the day and aim for Inbox Zero (or close). Here are a few quick tips that will help you get the most out of limited email checkins:

  • Scan each email for no more than 10 seconds to decide what needs to be done with it. If the topic is urgent, reply right away. If it can wait, you can defer it, using a tool like our very own FollowUpThen
  • Automatically filter/sort any emails that you are CC’d or BCC’d on to a separate folder. If everyone is following the rules, these emails are not messages that you need to take action on. At the very least, they usually don’t require as immediate action as messages where you are listed in the TO field.
  • Use a tool like Unroll.me to unsubscribe from all of the emails that don’t need your attention (promotions, newsletters, etc).

What tips do you use for processing emails quickly and moving on with your work?

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