Productivity tips on how to handle E-mail – thinking about how to use our tools

Taming the E-mail tiger – how to manage your E-mail to be more productive. Dennis Kennedy has some great productivity tips on how to handle E-mail.  I like his idea of a folder that is labelled something like “action items.”  That is, a place that you can move emails relating to things that need to be done, but not right away.  I recently started aggresively managing E-mail in my inbox, and it has made a world of difference.  I wish I had read Dennis’s article a couple of years ago.

The key is to keep as few emails in your inbox as possible.  If you can do that then you are in good shape.

[Ernie the Attorney]

A nice pointer from Ernie to some useful tips.

It’s also a good example of how important it’s becoming for knowledge workers to start thinking explicitly and systematically about how they use the tools they have at hand. The marketing behind most technology tools gets in the way here, because it emphasizes such fuzzy notions as “intuitive interfaces.”

For all the power built into the tools we have, we take far too little time to think about how to make most effective use of those tools in our day-to-day work. When we do, more often than not, we get stuck in inapplicable notions of productivity and throughput drawn from industrial models of mass production..