IS E-MAIL CAUSING YOU TO LOSE HOURS IN YOUR DAY?
- Do you find you cannot sit in a meeting or seminar without checking your e-mails on your phone?
E-mail can become an addiction – we can’t ignore it long enough to get our teeth into more important tasks.
- Does your in-box generally contain more than 40% messages that are more than a week old?
Revise your e-mail filing habits so that your in-box becomes more efficient and easier to access
- When a new mail arrives on your computer, do you generally stop what you’re doing to read that mail?
You may need more time management discipline – learn how to ignore the lure of the incoming message.
- When needing to refer back to e-mails, do you find it takes you longer than 20 seconds to locate it (or worse – do you tend to rather just ask the other party to resend their mail because you no longer have it)?
Develop – and use – better e-mail filing systems
- Do you have constant incoming mails from the same sender you don’t want to receive mail from?
Take more time unsubscribing to unnecessary mail, or to inform others that their mails would be better directed elsewhere.
- Do you find that you receive a good deal of mail that should not have been directed to you?
Communicate more clearly to colleagues that you are not the best person to receive that type of mail.
- When you go through your e-mail in-box with the intention of dealing with all the residue, do you find you take longer than you had planned because of the numerous distracting yet unimportant mails?
Learn to ignore irrelevant mail, or find more efficient ways of clearing out your in-box.
- Do you find yourself sending on mails to multiple recipients without explicit instructions, just to get the matter “off your plate”?
Everyone needs to exercise sensitivity towards others’ time constraints – learn the basics of e-mail etiquette.
- Do you know how the colleagues with whom you correspond regularly by e-mail prefer you to structure your mails (eg. attachments) to them, to make reading most efficient for them?
When you know your recipient’s needs better you are able to structure your mails in a way that is most likely to be read and quickly dealt with by him/her.
- Do you sometimes send a mail to someone simply to be able to “tick that box”, rather than talking to them directly at a time most conducive to a well-planned discussion?
Watch out that your poor e-mail etiquette doesn’t alienate your colleagues or cause communication problems at work.
- Do you find that you struggle to obtain answers or feedback from people you have requested information from?
Learn the techniques for structuring the wording in your mails to improve the likelihood of a positive response
- Does the content or tone of your e-mails sometimes cause conflict or negative reactions?
- Do you ever wish you had checked an e-mail more carefully for mistakes or tone before hitting the “send” button?
- Do the recipients of your e-mail respond with phone calls or reply e-mails to ask for clarification on what you have written?
Develop better business writing and written communication skills. This way you will improve successful relationships at work and increase your efficiency.
Copperline can help you! Take a look at our Business Writing and E-mail Writing courses if you would like to know more about a training programme that will help you – and your colleagues – to communicate better by e-mail.