One of the most controversial disciplines we teach is an email system that will save hours of time for you every week if you embrace it. Half our clients love it, and half run for the hills when they hear it.
The system works like this:
1. Turn your email over to your assistant or to someone you trust. This means he or she checks it for you multiple times throughout the day.
2. Divide all of your emails into three categories:
a. Junk emails: Have your assistant clear these out. You’ll never see another spam email again.
b. Informational emails: These are all emails that you must read eventually but aren’t urgent and don’t need a reply (e.g., newsletters and articles). Decide how you want to receive them (e.g., private email, hard copy, or separate folder). Schedule a block of time to read them on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis.
c. Response emails: These are emails that need a response. They fall into two categories—ones your assistant can respond to and ones that you need to respond to (this should be 50/50). For the ones that you
need to respond to, decide how you would like to receive them and respond.
3. Enjoy the freedom and time savings. This discipline will boil all emails you are looking at now down to only the ones that need a response from you personally. This will free up hours per week, which will free you up to go sell something, manage or lead someone better, or have a more balanced life.
As with every EOS tool and discipline, there is no theory. We practice what we preach. I’ve lived this discipline every day for seven years, and I enjoy great freedom as a result of it.