Podcast interview – How Your Inbox is Holding You Back – with Ian Griffin

Here is a link to a brief interview I gave to Ian Griffin http://bit.ly/aUg5mc  and his post about that interview: http://www.exec-comms.com/blog/2010/07/23/interview-marsha-egan-inbox-detox/

Here is an excerpt from his post about our interview:

I sat down with Marsha at the recent National Speakers Association Convention in Orlando and asked her the details about what she tells audiences about the steps to free up and time and attention from email. In the podcast (click on the icon below) you’ll hear Marsha:

•Share shocking stats on how much time an average employee wastes on email – and what this translates to in terms of the bottom line.

•How much is wasted annually by needless email interruptions (hint: it’s greater than the GDP of 38 nations in the world).

•Suggest one effective tip on reclaiming your life from email addiction.

•Let us in on the secret as to how many emails she reads a day!


E-mail and Texting are being used in “Two Way Keynotes” a la Larry Chaing

I just got back from the National Speakers’ Association convention in Orlando, where I attended Larry Chaing’s workshop – What They Don’t Teach You at NSA.

In that workshop, he asked attendees to text or email questions to him, AS HE WAS SPEAKING. Novel approach! He called it the 2 way keynote, which extends this whole social media concept of ‘conversation’ to another level. He took a break in his talk to read the questions texted to him, and he answered them. New way of keeping a record of the questions, heh?!

Another way this can be done is by having a compatriot monitor the text messages, emails and tweets, so as not to distract the speaker. Or to have them project on the screen.

Interactivity at its best! Kudos Larry.

Email pet peeve: Reply All

Stop sending to all if all do not have a need to know.

“Reply All” is convenient. It is easy. BUT – If all don’t need to know, you’ve just intruded. Yes, every unnecessary email IS an intrusion.

Some companies have actually removed the ‘Reply All’ button. What a novel idea!

Be frugal with who’s copied on your responses. Not only will it save them time, YOU won’t get their response – so you’ll get less email too.

Avoid these red flag words in office email – LifeHacker

Great post by LifeHacker.com on words to avoid to avoid getting your company in trouble. You laugh – these were in found in actual court documents.

How about…

  • Big Problem
  • Serious trouble
  • I can’t believe
  • Catastrophic

Click here  for the whole article.

The Biggest Source of Email Overload? News Sources and Professional Subscriptions – IABC

According to a recent global study conducted by IABC (International Association of Business Communicators, ) our drowning in email is actually causing us to be less productive.

According to the study, the biggest sources of email overload are:

•News sources and professional subscriptions (61 %)

•Co-workers (39%)

•Professional networks (34%)

•Team/department sources (29%)

•Company wide corporate sources such as senior mgmt and HR (23%)

Source: http://www.urgentbusinessforms.com/employee_handbook.asp

Julie Freeman, President of IABC, stated that ,

…most people are struggling with how to manage it all and it’s having a significant impact on productivity around the world.An overwhelming majority (85 percent) said that it was having a negative impact at least some of the time. It was even higher (93 percent) for users of Blackberry devices and other personal digital assistants (PDAs).

Ask Marsha: What do I do about our employees using cell phones and texting during work hours?

Tough question. Most times when people are using their cell phones at work, it is for personal reasons. If it is being done blatantly or obviously, it can be a real rub for the management staff. They are essentially using company time for personal stuff — not fair to the employer.

I know several companies that have banned the use of cell phones from the workplace, allowing them only at break time and at lunch. I personally think that this should be the appropriate goal. It is not just an issue with people being on their cell phones, but if they ring or beep with a text message while someone is on the phone with the client, it can be distracting. The other issue that is starting to arise is texting, which does not place the cell phone in someone’s ear, and can be done in their lap — being even more covert. The strong majority of all of this is personal and is taking away from the business. Cell phones should be kept out of sight, and not on desks where people can see incoming text messages, etc. Distractions are costly to business.

I think you know I am an advocate of promoting culture rather than rules. If you can have a companywide or departmentwide discussion on this whole issue and ask them to respect their business time and use cell phones only at breaks and at lunch, unless there’s an emergency, it could go a long way towards everyone being committed to not using them during work. If that fails, then a policy or a rule is the next best choice.

Some businesses do allow personal phone calls if they are kept short. This is the other way to go with it — by saying that cell phones are allowed for very brief phone calls but anything lengthy should be done at break or at lunchtime.

If it is one person who seems to be abusing their work time on the cell phone, then I would take the approach of having a discussion with that person. Sometimesthe resultant “buzz” is enough to get everybody to stop.

If there are people in your operation who use their cell phones for work, enforcement is much easier, because if the employer has given them the cell phone, the records are available to the employer to check personal versus business use.

Bottom line, the excessive personal use of cell phones and texting during working hours is a drain to the productivity of the business, and can be career threatening to the individual abusing the privilege.

Email pet peeve: The Email "Meeting"

Some people actually try to solve complex issues by email. Ridiculous!

Check out our other blog post on Toxic Emailer “Chatroom Chuck.”

When something needs to be discussed, DON’T use email. Email is not for discussing, it is for the passing of one way communication.

So, beware the email meeting. Once you’ve seen an issue go around more than once, call a meeting!