I’ve been struggling with this one for awhile now. In my old job, I remember finding some solace once I developed a routine of only checking my email twice a day (once before noon & and once more before heading home). But the pace of email overload seems to have tripled in the last year and I find that even in taking one day off means with almost 100% certainty that I’ll have 80+ emails to comb through.
In most cases CCs and FYIs make up almost 50% of my Inbox's unread entries and it makes me wish that there were easier protocols to separate the “Need your approval” and direct “to me” messages from those that are merely professional information courtesies meant for later consumption.
An old colleague I know well uses “email free Fridays” to help add some levity to his week. I’m seriously (very seriouuuuusly!) considering adopting this strategy in order making way for some much needed productive office time. But I’m wondering if there may be other options… how about you? How to you cope with email overload? Are there protocols that your organization uses to help make the work week more productive?
Read Lost in E-Mail, Tech Firms Face Self-Made Beast, NYTimes 06.14.08