Back in 2015, McKinsey told us in their report that ‘The average worker spends an estimated 28 percent of the workweek managing e-mail’
It will come as no surprise that as well as being inefficient and affecting our productivity this is also affecting our health, “Email overload is causing people to get ill," says Cary Cooper, organisational psychology professor at Lancaster University in the UK. His research has found that higher email load is associated with higher workload stress.
Companies and managers can do a lot to help – banning internal emails and using messaging services instead or creating policies on who should and shouldn’t be on cc in emails can really help. As is creating a culture where people are encouraged to respect other’s time by ensuring line managers never send emails outside of office hours to their subordinates unless it's absolutely essential, or thinking before sending emails at the end of the week about something that needs to be handled after the weekend.
However, individuals need to take responsibility too, so, what can be done improve our efficiency and more importantly our mental health by taking back control of our inbox:
This is achieved by a strict system that allows you to categorise your emails into five categories with a system of filters, reminders and notifications and a strong reliance on deleting any unwanted or completed information.
More can be found here
If all this seems just a bit too much on the organised side – we have just four easy steps to help you take back control:
Schedule time to read and respond to email
Take action immediately
Set up a filing system
Before you file a message, ensure the subject line is search-friendly. If it doesn’t accurately describe the content of the email, edit the subject line before it’s categorised and archived.
Finally – don’t get too hung up on it. The ides is to streamline and give yourself more time, if you find you’re spending too much time organising your inbox – you’re doing it wrong!
Posted on Thursday Jun 13