Email is an extremely useful communication tool in business. Less intrusive than a phone call, email is convenient and fast. It empowers entrepreneurs to run their businesses from just about anywhere.
You can communicate with clients and customers, check in with employees and set up important meetings from your office or on the go.
But when used inappropriately, email can hinder productivity. More than one-quarter of a worker’s day on average is spent answering and reading emails, according to research released in 2012 by the McKinsey Global Institute. Its survey found that email is the second-most time-consuming activity for workers, next to “role-specific tasks.”
Business leaders, CEOs and managers often receive hundreds, if not thousands, of emails a day. Reading and responding to every message can become a drain on time and energy.
A cluttered email inbox — filled with old, unopened or unimportant messages — will not only frustrate you. It will prevent you from maximizing your time and distract you from other obligations.
Here are four strategies to better manage your email and keep the messages in your inbox to a minimum.
1. Set aside time to read and respond to email.
Don’t leave your email program open all day long. Alerts and beeps from incoming messages can interrupt your work