We all use email so much that it can actually eat up all our free time. With our mobiles receiving emails and the Ipad too, you can’t seem to escape from them.
Over the years I have learnt many ways of improving my efficiency. I would like to share some useful tips with you, on how you can improve your emails.
Your email signature.
If you are constantly having to type the ending to all your emails, eg: Regards or Thanks – you can put that into your signature.
Make sure your signature is on all initial emails and that it includes all your relevant contact details. It can be really frustrating when you can’t find a persons phone number and you have loads of their emails.
I have been to visit many clients who have shown me their Outlook with thousands of emails in the Inbox. That scares me. I have seen Outlook crash when there were simply too many emails in the Inbox. When Outlook crashes it can be very distressing!
It takes a few seconds to create folders and then you can organise your emails and keep your inbox clean. I try to leave only things I have pending in my inbox, when it builds up I find sometime to get things done and it all cleaned up again.
To me this is the area that is most important. Some people are extremely brief in their emails and in their SMS messages, others write whole books. I think a comfortable comprise is needed.
After you have said the usual pleasantries, get straight to the point, and make it extremely clear. Try and say everything you need so that the other person will definitely understand, rather than leave any guessing. Here is an example.
Client emails me, or even worse sends me an SMS:
My website isn’t working.
There are a few assumptions here:
1. I know which website he is referring to
2. That I know who he is
3. That I have all his contact details
The more effective way to right this email would be:
My website www.domain.com is not working. This page shows an error – www.domain.com/about.htm
Can you please fix this?
When you write the email try to think of the questions that may arise from the message you are sending and answer them.
Another typical example is in arranging meetings:
Can you meet up next week?
Yes, sure when is best for you?
Wednesday or Thursday
Ok Wednesday morning?
Sorry can’t. How about 12?
Ok 12 it is. At my office or yours?
Mine is better.
Ok. Wednesday at 12 at your office.
Ok see you then.
That’s 11 messages which could have been done in 3. Lets see:
Can you meet up next week, I am free on Wednesday and Thursday morning, except for 11-11.30 on Wednesday. It would be best in my office as I have something to show you.
Sure, let’s make it Wednesday at 12 at your office. Ok?
Great. See you then.
• Be specific
• Be clear
• Try not to leave questions open ended
• Explain what you need to in order to avoid unnecessary questions
These are just a few tips that can help you make your emailing quicker, easier and more effective. Let me know any tips that you use to improve your email efficiency, by commenting below.