Lately, if you’ve been feeling like email management has become more like a full time job, you may just be right. A recent survey revealed that an average worker in the U.S. spends spends 6.3 hours a day checking mail (personal and work combined) and receives more than 100 emails daily. In fact, more than 90% of the responders admitted they checked personal emails at work and 87% looked at business emails outside of their working hours. Unsurprisingly, the alarmingly high levels of email addiction in millennials, the largest generation in workforce today is seriously affecting workplace productivity.
Here are three proven email hacks you could use to boost productivity while keeping your inbox under control:
#1 Don’t dive into your inbox first thing in the morning: Checking emails as soon as you reach office isn’t a good way to utilize the freshness of a clear mind as you start the day. The better way is to get at least the less time consuming priority items such as sending ready files for client delivery, giving a final look at a presentation/report and sending it out, and other such tasks, out of the way first. Once you’ve ticked these items off your to-do list, reward yourself by giving in to the temptation of checking your inbox. See how Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh applies this strategy.
#2 Deactivate email notifications and unnecessary subscriptions: With each notification, your concentration takes a hit of minimum 64 seconds, and the mind takes about 20 minutes to bounce back to the previous productivity level again. It’s also stressful to be continuously checking emails and turning off notifications is a good way to set boundaries. Also, take a hard look at what emails you should be receiving and those that are longer relevant – leverage a service like Unroll.me to instantly clean up inbox clutter.
#3 Hit Filter and Spam more often: Sure, you can ‘delete’ irrelevant emails too but think about the time you’d spend hitting the delete button in an entire workweek and you’ll get the picture. Instead, if an email is from a trusted source (fried/colleague/brad you know) but can be responded to later, filter it out and put into a separate folder. There are software that intuitively analyse which emails are important to you ad which are not, and appropriately take action. But you if you prefer human intervention and intelligence to be involved, you can hire a virtual assistant who will constantly monitor and manage your emails, saving tons of your precious time.
Why fret when you instead can delegate email management to a virtual assistant?
Across the world, email management is one of the top tasks that business owners, busy professionals, public figures, researchers, and others outsource to their virtual assistants. It helps them almost clone themselves – a clone that is super responsive, professional, understands your style and voice, and is human. Think how your email contacts would feel if a robot was to respond back to them? Here’s how a virtual assistant can streamline email management for you:
- Organize your folders and send you a sorted list of emails that need your attention, in their order of priority every evening
- Send templated, yet humanized responses to certain email categories such as invitations, connects / requests, queries, etc.
- Increase your responsiveness to your staff, clients, prospects, as well as personal contacts
- Manage email on your behalf when you travel, attend meetings, or take a personal break
This infographic explains perfectly how delegating email management to a virtual assistant can set you up for a highly productive, stress-free, and liberating work and life.