You may find it hard to believe, but we have been living in a post-GDPR world for a few weeks now. At this point, your heart rate should almost be back to normal and you may even be starting to remember what it feels like to relax. The only thing standing between you and normality is the black abyss of a thousand ‘We’ve Updated Our Policies!’ emails. It may be tempting to filter all of these into a folder and carry on with your life, but why not use this as an opportunity to do some Spring cleaning in your inbox and maybe even break a bad habit?
We’ve all been there. What starts with the reluctance to delete emails, or simply failing to open emails at busy times, quickly escalates into an accumulation of excessive clutter in our inboxes. We’re also all too familiar with the fear of accidentally deleting something important and the email-related indecisiveness faced at work on a daily basis.
It’s easy to see how we can become subject to such email enigmas. People have recently admitted to having hundreds of emails gathering in just one account! Now, if we think in terms of real, tangible mail, several thousand would be obscene. However, the vast storage availability is the beauty of email communication. As long as you are organised enough to find whatever you’re looking for instantaneously, the total volume of information should not be a problem.
Email hoarding can become problematic when you’re faced with the everyday managing of your workload on top of being drowned in unopened emails, leading to an information overload. The potential for unorganised email to lower employee productivity, or increase the time assigned to everyday tasks, must not be underestimated, with inefficiency and stress at stake in the long run. Clutter can double the time it takes you to accomplish something, and recent claims have even seen links between email hoarders and decreased innovation at work. And this is only a fraction of the unhealthy consequences that can emerge from a lack of organisation in your professional email account.
There is not just one solution to this hoarding problem, but taking several incremental changes, starting with these tips, could help you to administrate your email more effectively:
1. Microsoft has recently introduced the “low priority” email category which can be utilised to distinguish the important from the not-so-important - a great new way to prioritise.
2. Distinguishing private from professional emails is a necessity, but holding equal importance is to keep on top of important emails through separate accounts for newsletters and junk, making sure that your primary account is where genuine people can get hold of you.
3. Unsubscribe to inappropriate or unnecessary subscriptions. This can be done easily by clicking the unsubscribe button often hidden in the small print at the footer.
4. Many people aren’t aware of the email search tool. Use this to keep track of certain topics, clients and data. This is often located in the top right with a microscope icon.
5. Make sure you open an email when you receive it - even if it’s a short glance whilst you are working on other things - and reply as soon as you can.
6. Go on a deleting spree! Even if you spend an hour flicking through old emails, you’ll feel cleansed and more organised for the experience.
So, if your inbox has overwhelmed you recently, it’s time to get organised. Hoarding is not healthy, and coming to terms with the fact that you need to de-clutter is a great start to freeing up your time and enhancing your workspace efficiency.
If you have enjoyed this post or would like to learn more, you can take a look at our website at www.halecroftrecruitment.co.uk