Email Overload is extremely common in today’s work culture across the Middle East and North Africa (MENA). This issue is not only experienced by those who work in management positions; the average employee at any company is constantly trying to remain on top of their inboxes.
As a feedback representative at Bayt.com, I personally handle an average of 300 to 350 emails on daily basis. I would like to share with you some of the simple hacks I have learned to utilize for managing a never-ending stream of emails.
Here are some suggestions on how you can deal with email overload for any position and any work environment:
1. Set priorities for yourself
To manage your inbox requests and implement tasks efficiently, you must prioritize and set timeframes for each job you will work on. Prioritization creates a neat system out of the chaotic, overloaded work inbox. When you prioritize which requests to handle first, you’ll manage to put aside less urgent matters for the time being. Some people prefer to start with the tasks that require the least amount of time. Others prefer using their morning energy for complex projects. No matter what your preferred work style is and how you structure your day, it is critical that your emails are sorted based on priority level.
2. Organize your inbox
Create folders to filter and sort through your emails. Set flags or labels like “Important,” “follow up,” or any other marker that suits the nature and needs of your work. In fact, sorting and labeling your messages will help you in making more effective prioritization decisions. Doing so will also keep you updated about your work progress, which is always encouraging.
3. Delete the unnecessary
You will find that your email isn’t always overloaded with important tasks and urgent requests. In fact, most of the time inboxes are filled up with newsletters, advertisements, and a lot of spam. Eliminate as many of those as possible so you will have a clearer picture of the most important tasks and the most pressing requests.
4. Know when you need to meet up
Sometimes an email correspondence keeps going back and forth with no productive response or end result. This type of emails can be time wasting and also frustrating. The next time you feel that an issue is not being identified and countless emails are being exchanged, ask for a face to face meeting to deal with this matter.
5. Clear your mind and try to relax
An overloaded email can easily cause you stress and frustration at work. According to the Bayt.com Infographic: Stress in the MENA Workplace, September 2016, 40% of professionals across the MENA find technology to be more stressful. Take some time before you open your inbox to review the tips above and create an action plan. Also, make sure to take short breaks throughout the working day to take your mind off that overloaded inbox and to reenergize. You are a human being with so much power and so much time, and sometimes you will not keep up with the pace or will need some additional support. It is perfectly acceptable to know when that is the case or when you just need to take a deep breath to figure things out.
This article originally appeared in Bayt.com.
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