Well round 1 has been paying off… my habits are not perfect yet, nor is my mechanisms perfect, but I feel I have more control over my e-mail than 6 months ago. However, I still spend way too much time on e-mail. So ROUND 2… here I come!
My next strategy is to get brief in answering e-mail. Some might consider this unfriendly, I call it practical. I am going to join the 5 sentences movement. You will start seeing in my signature a statement: “Personal e-mail policy: http://five.sentenc.es/“. This does not mean that I will not treat you with respect, or spend time on your request. To the contrary, it may sometimes take longer… This does not mean that I won’t attach a document with feedback etc. Support me by not sending e-mails with multiple topics (its bad e-mail manners anyway), rather send two that each deals with its own topic.
Some critics might quote “Sorry that I wrote such a long letter, I had no time to write a shorter one”… (this seems to be one of the quotes attribute to many well-known figures: from Churchill, Lincoln to Mark Twain… I have no idea who’s the real originator) and this does indeed raise a question in my own mind. Then again, if I can’t/won’t help you quickly I might as well say so and get on with life…
Will it work? Will it help? I don’t know? I hope it will… What do you think? Leave your thoughts in the comments below please.