Drive your focus to value creation
There is a constant stream of emails these days. Many of us spend enormous time managing them. It takes away time from our key priorities and goals. We need to follow a disciplined approach for maintaining focus on the priorities.
Here are a few tips to help:
- Notice if an email is addressed directly to you or just a copy for information. Ignore the emails where are you are copied. Read them later, no urgency.
- Become aware of current time allocation. End of each day review where was your time spent. How much was spent on managing emails?
- Set a routine for checking emails. Fix periods during the day when you will attend to emails. It could be three fixed period during the day. Let all colleagues know your email schedule, so they do not expect your responses outside these periods. If urgent they can always call or meet you.
- Review subjects that needed responses from you. Think, what could have been delegated to someone else effectively. Redirect such matters.
- Build capability by training or coaching your staff/ managers to handle regular emails.
- Schedule an exclusive “ME” time for self in the mornings for one hour. Use it for deep thinking to focus on priorities and strategic issues. Make it most productive. No meetings, no phones, and no emails during this exclusive “ME” time.
- Set a goal for an ideal time allocation for emails and monitor progress.
- Consider using a phone call, video or personal meetings instead of emails. Direct two-way communication builds trust and cuts emails.
By Narendra Ambwani for Zeus