When it comes to inbox management, we often undervalue the importance of keeping it clear
BUT this is extremely important if we want to optimize our time management and be highly efficient.
To be able to work in a productive way our inbox should
- Have a maximum number of mail messages
- Have only mail messages that require ACTION or ATTENTION
- Be cleared every day
It’s your (or your collaborators’) responsibility to stick to a daily routine to keep it efficient.
Here you are the 5 steps to my daily inbox routine:
THE WHITE SPACE
I don’t have a specific maximum number of messages that can stay on my inbox, but I need to see the white space under the list. This means to me that the number of messages is manageable and that I can focus and prioritize the right ones.
So, every day I delete all those email that I find useless for my business, including spam, private messages, duplicated messages (messages that tell me they have shared a doc in some of my daily checked apps), non-relevant newsletters (which I unsubscribe from)
Set up folders and sub-folders. I have one folder for each client (with relevant subfolders), one for my business (with relevant subfolders) and one for things TO READ when I have time (so, non-urgent communication that I commit to read at least once a week and clear).
I send all newsletters to be read and non-urgent messages to the TO READ folder.
I immediately read my clients’ emails and, if they do not require action, I archive them in the relevant folder/subfolder.
Now I have only 3 types of messages in my inbox:
Those that require me to do something
Those that require me to wait for something
Those that require me to reply.
So, I label the first 2 types with ACTION or WAITING ON.
If my messages require a reply, I respond to them and then manage the original message.
Now I need to prioritize.
I convert all ACTION messages into ClickUp tasks (with a deadline and an assignee) using my ClickUp Chrome extension.
I convert all my WAITING ON messages into reminders in ClickUp. If what I am waiting on is scheduled for the same day, I keep the message open in a new tab so I have it ready when I need it.
The entire process takes 5 to 15 mins every morning and it’s part of the opening of my virtual office routine.
I have a daily OPENING OF MY VIRTUAL OFFICE routine, a weekly ORGANIZING MY WEEK routine and a weekly END OF THE WEEK check out routine.
Do you have daily and weekly business routines?
Are you an entrepreneur working alone or with a small team? If you are looking for someone helping you setting up your systems, processes and SOPs, I am here to help
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