Keeping E-mail Under Control

This is a guest post by Stephanie Calahan.  Stephanie is a nationally known speaker, productivity consultant and founder of Calahan Solutions.

“Some firms report that e-mails account for up to 40 percent of data-storage costs, with an estimated one in five defined as non-business-related”

— Source: Hitachi Data Survey of 630 IT Directors, via

Are you like most executives?  Statistics report that the average exec averages at least 100 emails daily.  Add to that, the National Association of Professional Organizers reports that e-mail has added one to two hours to each person’s work schedule per day compared to 10 years ago!

Today I’ll cover some tips you can use to keep your in-box under control.

Take Control!

  • Do your other work first. Try not to open your email first thing in the morning!  (I know — easier said than done…) Complete your other important tasks before opening that in-box.
  • Incorporate Into Your To Do List.  As you review your emails, update your to-do list with the action items you have as a result!
  • When You are the Sender – Use Templates and Stationary. If you frequently send the same type of email, save a copy as a draft or template that you can reuse over and over (changing the specifics such a nam, date and amount for each email.)  Many email programs have the ability to save pre-formatted stationary you can recall over and over.  Let us know if you need help knowing how to do that.
  • Slow the Electronic Conversation.  If the matter you are replying to is not urgent, reply right away (procrastination is never good), but schedule it to go out a few days later.
  • Turn off the “You’ve got mail” Bell/Notification. Constant interruptions with the email notification sound make it difficult for anyone to complete other tasks.

What do you do?

What do you do to manage your email?  Share your tips!  I know my readers would be interested in hearing what you do so that they can try it too!

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