Ten quick email productivity tips


Here are 10 Tips that my employer CUNet provided to improve productivity and reduce wasted time.  

  1. There is no need to send a one word "thanks" email; its implied.
  2. Code your emails in the subject line - INFO - if its an information email | REPLY - if you need the recipient to take some kind of action
  3. If something is urgent or a serious matter, consider using the phone or talking to the person face to face. Do a gut check: if you have an uncomfortable feeling about something, it is usually better to talk directly in person.
  4. When forwarding an email, remove the forward in the subject line and provide context. If you see a potential endless string developing, pick up the phone.
  5. Don't use the "reply to all" button. Only use if neccessary, not everyone on the original list needs to see your reply. I'm sure you've heard of some horror stories when this button is used.
  6. Keep subject lines relevant to the message. Use the subject line to summarize your message - not describe it. If the entire message fit in the subject line, put it there with EOM to indicate that it is the end of the message
  7. Establish regular check message intervals. Check emails at defined times of the day, instead of checking whenever a new email arrives.
  8. Modify your weekend response expectations. To avoid weekend busywork, people who send an email on weekends should not expect a response until Monday, unless you have some kind of on-call job.
  9. When scheduling a call or conference, include the topic in the invitation or subject line.
  10. Be aware of the tone you are projecting in your email. An example is ALL CAPITAL LETTERS CAN BE INTERPRETED AS SHOUTING!  If you are unsure, read it aloud before sending.

Some of these seem pretty obvious to some of us but judging from the emails I get someone out there could really use this info