Time is money. It’s a nifty little catch phrase that most of us have probably heard at one time or another. Ironically, the emergence of technology made to make our lives easier, email, has a tendency to take more time from us than we realize!
A staggering 66% of people check their email multiple times per day, and 13% check hourly or more frequently. You might think a quick peek and read isn’t being counter-productive, but if you add all those minutes up, that’s a lot of time spent in the course of a day!
Smart phones have only added fuel to the fire. Now with push notifications we are literally notified the instant a message comes in. And I don’t know about you, but if I know there’s a message sitting there, it’s worse for me if I don’t just check it!
Ideally, you should only check your email twice per day. As nice as this may sound, this isn’t realistic for many who rely on their email and need to access it during their work day. There are still some ways to turn down the white noise of email and help you to be more productive.
Turn off smart phone push notifications
Really, no email is so important that it can’t wait for a bit. If something was that urgent, you won’t get an email… you’ll get a phone call. Turn off the push notifications on your phone so you aren’t constantly being interrupted by a stream of messages that you’re compelled to respond to. This distraction can take a hit at your productivity!
There’s no need for anyone to keep an email program open on their desk. If you hear that familiar “ding” you’ll look. You can’t NOT look. Do yourself a favour and keep the email program closed and try to commit yourself to only checking email once every two hours. If the nature of your job requires you to stay a little more “in touch” than that, check every hour. At the very least you will still be minimizing the distraction, and it’ll only be during the work day.
Call when you can
Nothing is worse than getting caught up in an email conversation with five other people that seems to go on forever! Whenever possible, pick up the phone. Even if it has to be a conference call, chances are things will get resolved a lot faster and you’ll avoid the eye strain.
Do you have any tips and tricks for minimizing the email interruption? We’d love to hear from you!