Saving threatened habitats worldwide

The Curse of email

31 July, 2009 - 16:01 -- John Burton

Inboxes of 50 or more emails every morning are now commonplace, and probably another 50 or so coming in during the course of the day. So how does one deal with this volume? The answer is probably, "Not very well". So I am on the look out for advice.

As I have mentioned elsewhere in this diary, many of the emails are internal and for information only -- just copies. But I would not like to ditch them because some are very useful. One way I cope is by not opening emails as they arrive -- but then some people phone up and ask if you got their email sent an hour ago!

The strange thing is, that when I am not in the office for several days, such as now (I'm currently in Paraguay), the world doesn't stop even though fewer emails get sent.

Perhaps if I could add a 50p donation for receiving an email -- a bit like a mobile phone charge or SMS -- that would not only reduce the volume, but also boost the funds available for doing what we are set up to do. Ideas, feedback?


Submitted by Millie on

Hiya. Our inboxes get full up too, and I joint manage 4 different inboxes with my line manager as well as my own inbox. We use outlook and emails are marked unread until they have been dealt with. Once they have been read/dealt with, we have a folder system in outlook for emails sent, actioned, acknowledgments, important information, etc.

After all of that, if it doesn't belong in one of our folders it can probably be deleted!

Millie B. (mslogica on Twitter)

Submitted by Anonymous on

If most emails are info only then you should think about having an internal Wikki. This way people in your organisation can post information, people can comment on information and the wikki can have an RSS feed. That way you can see at a glance all the post and just read the ones that you need too. Also the wikki can be searched and tagged. So that in the future when you need to refer to it you can.

Submitted by Gawad Kalinga F... on

It happens all the time even on my email. My goodness, every hour 5-10 spams email messages arrive in my inbox. I have already checked out and filter these emails and eventually reduced.

Submitted by msc_ssa on

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Submitted by Helena Akerlund on

This is an interesting take on how to spend less time on emails – involving 'virtual assistants':

The Holy Grail: How to Outsource the Inbox and Never Check Email Again

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