According to a recent study, the average office worker spends 29 days every year checking emails. It will not come as a surprise to anybody who runs a business. The amount may be higher if you own a company. However, it is still sobering. Just think about all of the tasks and responsibilities you could fulfil in that timeframe. Alternatively, think about how much focus you could give to growing and developing the company.
Well, the good news is that email management is what you make it. There are countless tools out there, which can streamline the job and give you back your time. The trick is finding the right ones. It is also necessary to change your mindset and approach to this kind of administrative work. Either you need to delegate the role to an assistant or stick to a structured schedule because so much of our email checking is procrastination.
Keep reading for some tips on the best ways to supercharge your mail management routines.
1. Hire a Secretary
As your business grows, you may find that you need extra help with basic administrative tasks. Entrepreneurs can be very stubborn about this and doggedly attempt to save money by doing everything themselves, but fast-moving companies do need receptionists, secretaries, and PAs. One cost-effective way to hire a secretary is by signing up to our virtual office package. The benefit is that you don’t have to hire anybody outright. Our assistants are available on a ‘pay for what you need’ basis so that the service can be dropped at any time.
2. Cut the Junk
If you are going to go it alone, strip everything back. Your inbox can be as messy as you like, but your business mail should be relevant, valuable, and easily categorised. It means no signing up to website mailing lists or newsletters unless they have a clear connection to the business. If you are keen to learn and want to receive digital guides, infographics, and other resources, have them sent to your inbox. You can always forward them to your work email if you still think them valuable at the end of the day.
3. Pick Up the Phone
There is a useful rule of thumb, which many business owners employ as a way to streamline their email habits. If you find yourself writing out a reply, which is longer than four lines, stop and pick up the phone. Email is designed to be fast and efficient. If you are spending an hour formulating correctly worded missives, you are wasting your time. One quick phone call will do the job much better.
4. No Saving for Later
Similarly, force yourself to adhere to another simple rule. Every time that you open a new email, it needs to be forwarded, replied to, archived, or deleted. There is no saving it for later because this is how email management starts to eat into valuable time. The reality is that an email cannot be that important if it requires no immediate, precise action. It can be a tricky habit to master, but it will not take long before you start to see the benefits.
5. Establish Your Schedule
For many entrepreneurs, the constant checking of emails is related to a fear that something significant will happen in between ‘logins.’ They worry about leaving urgent emails languishing in their inbox or giving a wrong impression to people who might be messaging with new opportunities. Nobody expects a company owner to be online all the time because life begins outside the computer screen, okay to make yourself available at specific times.