Archive for November, 2011

How a real Pro manages Email

Posted on November 25th, 2011 · Posted in Individual Solutions

Email overload tends to go up the more senior you get; executive level managers can easily get a few hundred incoming work-related messages a day. This is so commonplace that they don’t even stop to complain about it; they either cope with the crushing stress or they delegate their Inbox processing to an assistant. I’ve known one glaring exception, however. I knew one senior manager, a VP  of a hi-tech Fortune 500, who had a perennially near-empty inbox, and was receiving a paltry few dozen emails a day. I inquired as to how he got to this enviable state, and.. Read more

Do not Disturb variation

Posted on November 17th, 2011 · Posted in Analysis and Opinion

I’ve written before about various methods of ensuring freedom from interruption in the office; but pre-dating these there was the familiar “Do not Disturb” sign you hang on a hotel room door knob. These used to come in different colors, but they kept pretty much to the same form dictated by their function. A cardboard rectangle with hole… what was there to improve? Well, on my recent trip to Berlin I saw what someone felt is the next great leap in interruption-busters. The NH Hotel we stayed in had a switch inside the room that would light an electric sign.. Read more

Can’t they read?! – Take 2

Posted on November 7th, 2011 · Posted in Analysis and Opinion

I’ve pointed out that people don’t read the emails they’re replying to… and here is one more common manifestation of this: when you send someone an email asking two or three questions, you can be almost certain the reply will only address the first one. The recipient reads your mail, hits a question, responds to it and moves to another message. Then you need to write them another message to get the other items addressed (and create more overload for both parties). This being the universal case, there are steps you can take to defend against this tendency (besides sending.. Read more