Email Productivity Video Tip #6 – Don’t Make it Dialogue when it Isn’t

This InboxDetox Video minute with email productivity expert Marsha Egan reveals a great tip that can help you decide when to email and when NOT to.

Email Productivity Video Tip #5 – Is Emailing after midnight productive?

In this Video minute, email productivity expert Marsha Egan discusses the pros and cons of sending emails after midnight. Is it the right thing to do? Is it a career strategy or blunder?

Email Productivity Video Tip #4: Call THEN Send

This Video minute helps us alert our recipients to an important email, when it is truly important. This tip with email productivity expert Marsha Egan is not only effective but the height of proper email etiquette!

Email Productivity Video Tip #3: Talk THEN Write

Here is your Video minute of wisdom on how to make the most of your time sharing ideas. We waste too much time writing long drawn out proposals! A great Inbox Detox minute with email productivity expert Marsha Egan that will save you time!

Email Productivity Video Tip #2: The Overall Time of The Transaction

Inbox Detox Video Minute #2. Here’s your Video minute on how to decide what communication tool is the best. Email, phone call, meeting? It might not even be email! Watch email productivity expert Marsha Egan give you some tips.

Email Productivity Video Tip #1 -What’s a Great Subject Line?

Spend a quick Inbox Detox video minute with email productivity expert Marsha Egan while she helps you create effective and efficient email subject lines. Do you know the secret to best email subject lines?

Emailing while on the Phone – NOT Smart!!!

We all have tried it. Knock off a few emails while on a phone call…

As Dr. Phil would say, “How’d that work for ya?”

Bottom line –It doesn’t work. Pick one or the other, just NOT BOTH!

OpenClips / Pixabay


With the exponential rise of email usage, many of us feel the need to do everything at once to keep it all under control. Unfortunately, multitasking is a myth, and as much as we’d like to, we can’t do two things well at once. Especially talking on the phone and managing email.

We’ve all been on a phone call when the other party was clacking away at his or her computer. Or, the reverse –we try to whittle away those email messages while talking on the phone, and then realize we didn’t hear what was said, and embarrassingly have to ask the caller to repeat his point.

Face it – people can’t do two things at once. We try, but it’’s physically impossible, just like we can’t be in two places at the same time. What happens inevitably is that we either do one of the two things very well, and the other poorly, or do only about a 50% job on both. Neither of these options bode well.

What some people call multitasking is actually shifting from one task to the other and back again. There are situations when that can work effectively, but combining telephone dialogue and the handling of email is not one of them. Because conversation between two people is fluid, it is a continual stream of engagement. To take your focus off the conversation and sneak a few email deletes takes your concentration from the dialogue, giving it less than 100% effort.

By not devoting your complete attention to that conversation, you risk lengthening the time of the call through unnecessary repeats or missed points of information. The person on the other end of the line can, in most cases, tell that you’re not fully engaged, and that can be seen negatively or even viewed as offensive behavior. Finally, the quality of your email handling is at risk because you’re not fully focused.

The strategy? The minute the phone rings, minimize or close down your inbox. Do the same when you decide to make a call. These simple steps can enable you to be fully focused on the subject at hand, and not distracted by that ever-growing inbox. (You can maximize it after the call is finished.)

The ability to focus in this fast paced world is an excellent career building strategy, and this applies to things as simple as telephone conversations.

So, when you’re on the phone, turn away from the computer. Shut your email down. Don’t even think of handling an email in the middle of a dialogue.

Your discussion will be more effective because you’re fully engaged. It most likely will be shorter because you heard everything that was said – the first time. And, perhaps most important, you won’t offend the caller.

OpenClips / Pixabay

Phone ringing? Shut that inbox down.


Send an Email After Midnight? No way. Don’t even THINK About It

Some business emailers may think they impress their bosses, peers or subordinates by sending emails in the middle of the night. The truth is, while occasional 3:00 AM e-mails may be “forgiven,” repeated early morning emails will NOT be.

Hans / Pixabay

Not convinced? Just turn the tables and note your reaction when you see the time stamp of a received email at some ungodly hour!

Your co-workers might say…

• There Avish goes again, trying to impress the boss. What a manipulator.

• No wonder Sally isn’t with it during the day. She’s not getting enough sleep.

• How can he be thinking clearly at 2:00 AM?

• Does this mean I have to get up and check my email, since Harry does it?

The boss could wonder… 

• Why is Jim up at 4:00AM, regularly? Is he getting enough sleep? Is he in control? Is he stressed out? Is he out of balance?

• Is Rebecca just trying to impress me? Does she think that I value this behavior? Doesn’t she know how to delay the sending of the email to a “normal” hour?

• What part of “have a balanced life” doesn’t he understand?

OpenClips / Pixabay

And from your direct reports…

Yikes. My boss is emailing me at 3:00 AM! I wonder if he expects me to do that too?!

• I better check my email first thing in the morning; the boss may have sent me something again in the middle of the night. How’s that for wake up stress?

• What’s the matter with her!? Is she losing it? Why can’t my boss get a good night’s sleep?

• Does this mean I need to have my blackberry wake me in the middle of the night?

• Since he’s working 24/7, I assume I should also. Gad, I hate my job. 

In addition to these unhealthy perceptions, you’re taking a real risk creating an email message when you haven’t had a full night’s sleep. You may not be running on all cylinders. We’ve all regretted sending an email when we were wide-awake and functioning during the day. Sending in a sleepy state increases the potential for misconstrued messages.

Everyone is Fond of Owls
Brandon Christopher Warren / Foter / CC BY-NC

If you are a true night owl or on the computer in the early AM, compose a message and save it. Don’t send it till you’ve had a chance to review it in the light of day. We can almost guarantee that you’ll make changes that you’ll be glad you had the opportunity to make.

Make it a rule to NEVER send an email message when you should be sleeping. Your career, your co-workers, and your employees will be all the better for it.


OK, so what do YOU really think of those who email in the very late hours???


Twenty Ways to Use E-mail to Commit Career Suicide

Email is here to stay. It is very quickly becoming the primary communication tool in business. If you are looking to destroy your career through your e-mail practices, here are a few ways you can move the process along!

 1. Send an angry email. Take out your frustration on your boss or your co-worker by email. Send your first draft without reviewing it. And don’t forget to copy at least ten people. This is a great way to have career limiting documentation easily placed in your file.

2. Waste peoples’ time. The more you annoy people by creating extra work through a myriad of bonehead maneuvers like sending unnecessary emails, forgetting attachments, and inserting HUGE graphics, the less they will think of your business communications skills.

3. Forward lengthy chain emails, saying “see below.” A great way to call attention to your lack of respect for the receiver is to forward an email that has at least 10 previously forwarded emails contained in it. This forces the recipient to have to read through all 10 to try to figure out what is important.

4. “Throw a co-worker under the bus” by email. When one of your co-workers makes a mistake, be sure to document it for posterity by email. Either call the co-worker out by email and copy his or her boss, or even better, do it behind their back. You’ll be labeled as a snake and end your career quite quickly.

5. Send poorly written emails. Use improper grammar, spelling and punctuation. Use run on sentences. Make sure you don’t use spell check. Anyone receiving you email messages will get a quick first impression that you’re not serious about your career.

6. Use text lingo in business emails. This will definitely show your maturity and lack of respect for the recipient. IYKWIM. LOL

7. Bury the point of your communication in the middle of the message. By making it very hard for people to find what it is you are trying to convey, you will be sure to make a name for yourself in all your business circles.

8. Reply All. All the time. Hitting “reply all” consistently will earn you great disrespect among your co-workers. As the resentment builds from all the unnecessary emails they receive from you, your career credibility is sure to wane.

9. Copy as many people as you can. By adding many extra recipients, you might think you’re communicating, but what you’re really doing is adding more work to peoples’ already full plates. They may not catch on to this one right away, but over time, you won’t be able to hide.

10. Gossip via email. Even though you think that your friend won’t rat you out over the gossip you sent – hey, it is a permanent record, and that “friend” could be as catty as you!

PublicDomainPictures / Pixabay

11. Put several names in the “To:” line. This is a great way to confuse people on who is expected to do what. By making unclear requests, you’ll help slow your career down because those around you aren’t sure who you are asking to do the assignment.

12. Write long and rambling emails. This is another great way to annoy those who can influence your career. When you write very long messages, people get frustrated, miss the point, and think you’re a jerk for sending such an epistle.

13. Send emails between 1am and 5am. This strategy is great for indirectly letting your boss and co-workers think that you’re not on all cylinders. Sleeplessness and worry are not valued in a business environment.

14. Send huge unnecessary attachments. Try to look important by attaching more information than is needed. Your co-workers won’t appreciate the size of the message coming into their inboxes or opening stuff that has no relevance to the issue being discussed.

15. Use email to “discuss” complex issues. If you want to get everyone going, send an email message to a large group and ask them to discuss a very detailed and multifaceted issue. Just watch the email threads expand! You’ll waste a lot of peoples’ time and have a real challenge amassing all the information..

 16. Criticize your boss in an email. This is a good one. Email detailed descriptions of why you don’t like your boss to a trusted co-worker. You can bet that the email will make its way to the boss one way or another.,Just be ready for the most uncomfortable meeting of your life!

17. Send a lot of jokes. Even better, send dirty or ethnic jokes. These really waste everyone’s time and will land you in deep trouble. Just remember, once that email message is sent, there is no telling where it will show up.xwomanhappycomputer

18. Use company email for personal stuff. By knowingly violating the company policy on personal use of their systems, you can bring your career to a halt extremely fast.

19. Share company proprietary information by email. This is a quick way to get booted out the door. Send privileged client information or company secrets to an outsider and you can start that new job search sooner than you think.

20. Run a side business through your company email account. If you thought using company assets for your personal email would be a career killer, just try to run your cupcake baking business through your company email account. You’ll be baking cupcakes full time in no time!

Did we miss any? Share them here!


Assigning a Project? Set “Due Time” Rather than “Due Date”

Want to energize your department? Set due-times, rather than due-dates.

We’ve all requested a task to be completed by a certain day, only to be disappointed that the promised report was not emailed to us until 11:30 PM that night. You needed it by the end of the work-day not the day! Yeesh.

Here is a surprisingly simple strategy that will provide energy and clarity to your department or business, and enable even greater efficiency and progress:

Assign a due time, in addition to a due date.

rrabenda / Pixabay


Which is clearer?

• Please submit your month-end report to me by Friday, June 30.

• Please submit your month-end report to me no later than Friday, June 30, at 1:00PM. 

Providing a specific time leaves no question when the report is due and will make it easier on you and the person assigned with the task However, an even greater benefit is that this practice actually provides energy.

One word of caution: honor that date and time. Do something with the delivered item soon after that time deadline. If you don’t enforce the deadline or use the item in a timely manner, people will let things slide. And this strategy will not work as well the next time.

When people clearly understand the date and time that a task is expected, they find extra motivation to get it done. Also, since you know when you’ll receive it, you can concentrate on your work and not be disrupted.

To get all these benefits that keep your work group humming, just add the time to the delegated task and watch what happens when it comes time… for due time