By: Audrey Thomas
As I wrote last month, every person on a team contributes to the health of an organization’s email culture. Here are three more best practices I’ve seen my clients use to create an email culture that is productive and healthy:
- Summarize with bullet points. Forwarding an email? Don’t just hit forward and send; recap any points made in the forwarded message using bullet points for clear, easy reading.
- Change the subject line. When the conversation has shifted in an email thread, edit the subject line in Outlook to keep it relevant to the discussion topic. This also ensures quick, accurate replies–because everyone can remember exactly what’s on the thread.
- Be clear on response times. This one actually goes two ways: Organizations with healthy email cultures communicate to customers and clients how soon to expect a response (e.g. “next business day”). In a healthy email culture, managers also communicate their expectations for how frequently their team should be checking email AND how quickly emails should be responded to. Remember: Productivity soars when employees check their email FEWER times, not more! I recommend 3-5 times per day.
Consider your own email habits: What one or two small changes can you implement right away to become more effective with email?