We live in a world overwhelmed with information. Digital communications have become the main way people exchange information. With half the world using email, it’s unlikely that email will stop being an important tool soon. However, email is just an instrument to achieve certain goals, and improve your productivity. In this article, we will share with you several tips for effective email management.
Use folders and filters to sort your correspondence
Many people don’t organize their correspondence at all. They simply receive emails in the same inbox, which makes it difficult to find letters for further use, especially as mail volume increases. We recommend using filters and folders to organize your correspondence properly. If your mailing service doesn’t allow you to do it, perhaps, it is better to pick up another service and move your correspondence there. If you migrate from WLM to Outlook, you can greatly simplify this task using the Windows live mail converter. Then, take some time to set up a handy folder structure and useful email filters:
- Define the main categories and subcategories of emails. Create folders for each of them. Thus, you can always click on a folder/subfolder to view all emails on a particular issue;
- Email filters are logical rules by which your mail will be sorted automatically. Each filter consists of two parts: the criteria that the letter must meet and the actions that your email client must perform. For instance, if the letter was sent from firstname.lastname@example.org, then move it to the “Payments” folder. If the sender is on your blacklist, delete it (this way, you won’t see those emails at all).
People may have an unlimited number of filters that sort mail automatically. Whenever you receive emails that match the new pattern, you can create a new filter, so they go into a separate folder. After doing so, you may save more than just time. Use your energy for more important tasks.
Prioritize important emails
Not all emails are equally significant. Some of them are completely useless. But we tend to think that the new ones are the most important. Before you start working with letters, evaluate their importance. In general, mail can be divided into 3 categories:
- Category A: Your most important emails that will greatly influence your goals. Usually, this is 10-20% of emails. For example, these are additional questions from a potential employer in response to your resume or manager’s requirements;
- Category B: these letters are also important but not as important as A. They are not too critical for your goals/life. They can make up 40-60% of mail. These are work correspondence, newsletters that keep you up to date with the news in your industry, etc.;
- Category C: unimportant letters. Depending on your work, these can be 20-30%. Here we are talking about entertaining mailings, spam, promotions, etc.
Use the folder/filter structure to prioritize your correspondence. This is how you can make your inbox organized.