Abjs 2008 Veillette Inbox Zero

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  • 1. Inbox Zero Managing Email Overload with Action Based Email Christian Veillette M.D., M.Sc., FRCSC Assistant Professor, University of Toronto Shoulder & Elbow Reconstructive Surgery Toronto Western Hospital University Health Network Email: orthonet@gmail.com
  • 2. Objectives
    • Learn a system for handling email overload
    • Understand the difference between checking email and processing email
  • 3. Email Overload
    • Problem of email overload is taking a toll on all our time, productivity, and sanity
    • Why?
    Lack a cohesive system for processing our messages and converting them into appropriate actions as quickly as possible
  • 4. Then
    • 1995 first email account
    • PINE
    • Did not need a system
  • 5. Now
    • Email now one source for all incoming and outgoing information
    • Only way you are going to succeed is figuring out how to deal with high volume email
    • Remember - Life outside email
  • 6.  
  • 7. Time & Attention are finite.
  • 8. Time & Attention are finite. Concept: Joel Spolsky
  • 9.  
  • 10. Inbox Zero
    • Quickly answering a few escalating questions about each email message in my inbox:
    • What does this message mean to me, and why do I care?
    • What action, if any, does this message require of me?
    • What’s the most elegant way to close out this message and the nested action it contains?
  • 11. Inbox Zero
    • Email’s just a medium
    • One place for anything
    • Process to zero
    • Convert to actions
  • 12. What is Processing? More than checking Less than responding Decide what action to take with each email
  • 13. Action based email
  • 14.  
  • 15.  
  • 16.  
  • 17.  
  • 18.  
  • 19. What are your actions?
  • 20. The Processing Habit? “ We are what we frequently do” - Aristotle If you want to stop being part of the majority whose ass is getting kicked by email every day, it’s time to get serious about improving your habits.
  • 21. Do Email Less
    • Ultimate Goal - Spend less time playing with your email and more time doing stuff
    • Say no to crack(berry) - “always on” approach to email
    • “ What if I ‘miss’ something?”
    • Schedule email dashes - ganging your related email work into a focused few minutes of hard-edged activity performed on a regular schedule
  • 22. Benefits of the scheduled email dash
    • Gets you out of the perpetual notification business
      • allowing you to focus on your non-email work without interruption or distratction
    • Gives you more contextual insight into your true priorities
      • rather than letting the existence of new mail always equate the need for your instant and undivided attention
      • slightly higher-level vantage point lets you choose richest targets in context
      • dash format forces you to wisely pick best use of your time
      • surprisingly many “crises” will resolve themselves between dashes
    • Regular schedule firewalls your time and attention
      • ensures that you won’t get so absorbed in hitting “Get new mail” that the real “thinking work” gets short shrift
  • 23. Cheat!
    • Create filters
    • Noisy, frequent, and non-urgent items which can be dealt with all at a pass and later
      • “ friend” requests and similar announcements from community sites like Facebook or Flickr
      • mailing lists and subscribed forum threads
      • regular updates like newsletters and office memos
      • non-spam store updates, coupons, and sale announcements
    When you check your email and find yourself groaning “Ugh, this again?” consider creating a filter.
  • 24. My Inbox
  • 25. Thank you The Orthopaedic Internet: A Collaborative Resource