There are various mistakes that businesspeople do when it comes to managing their email accounts. Here are some of them that we may do:
- We don’t thread our email: Although some people may argue that threading or not threading our email is just a matter of preference, we would be able to better organize ourselves by properly threading our email messages. It means that each given conversation can be better tracked. Monolithic email structured can make management feels unwieldy and this will result in an overall reduced performance. It’s something that we need to avoid whenever possible. Any conversation in our account will evolve, so it’s important for us to organize our email structure.
- Use discretion: Unless necessary, we should reply to all email lists. We may receive an email from someone with loads of other email address in the CC and BCC fields. Before we click the “Reply to all” button, we should think whether it’s necessary for everyone to read our reply. If our reply is intended for the sender or specific person, we shouldn’t let other people read our message. Our email message should be distributed on a need-to-know basis.
- We don’t archive old emails and purge unimportant messages: Each month, we should take time to organize, archive and purge our email addresses. This would be much easier if we have separate email account for personal and business-related correspondence. There could be hundreds of old emails that we will never open again, because they are related to long-completed projects in the past. Junk and Sent folders also take up server space, so it is important to clear them regularly. However, we should know that when we delete both folders, the content could be transferred to the Deleted folder, so we should make sure that these messages are truly gone.
- We are not being careful: It is important to know that misunderstandings could easily happen during email communications. We only read the verbal language, but not the body language and facial gestures; which are also essential during person-to-person conversations. During high-stress times, people will need to resolve delicate and complex issues. Despite the significant pressures, we should watch the tone of our emails. We should carefully construct phrases or sentences, so thing that we write don’t cause more harm than good.
- If we are not careful, our email discussion has a good potential of spiralling out of control. This is something that we should try to avoid whenever possible. By being careful, we will be able to nurture good relationships with co-workers and customers. Salvaging a relationship in business environment can be quite difficult to do. By having a well organized email management, any negative connotation in our email communication can be prevented. Everything can be kept cordial and hopefully to the point. Occasional lapses in judgment could be a bad thing, so it is important to establish proper “rules of thumb”, so we are able to keep things clean.