I recently consulted a client who felt very overwhelmed with managing his email inbox. In fact he shares what most start up businesses share, that is a lack of organization and management of the daily emails that come in. Between subscribing to different lists, prospects, emails from new or existing clients and the daily operations there is almost too many emails to sort and go through. Some entrepreneurs spend hours managing their inbox and in the end spend less time managing their business.
Here are some tips from some of the best virtual assistants out there in the world who manage some of the most successful businesses out there.
1- The first key step is the creation of folders and subfolders to manage the different aspects of your businesses. This where you create major folders that involve your customer service, sales cycle, operational cycle, marketing, development, IT, subscriptions to other lists, miscellaneous folders. You can then break these folders into sub folders all the way to prospects and even the names of the different clients you have.
2- The next step is to filter incoming emails to various folders based on the priorities and the times on when you follow up with these emails. Some emails require you to research or read while others may require an answer. Based on urgency and action you can choose to file and read these emails at certain times when you are not busy.
3- The key step is to manage your emails so you have a clean inbox. Unnecessary emails need to be deleted. Completed projects either archived or stored. Replied emails can either be filed or removed. Finally emails are archived. When your inbox is empty it brings about a sense of organization and accomplistment. You don’t feel so overwhelmed.
4- Future tasks are either put in follows ups, flagged or added to your calendar for future perusal. Manage your tasks, calendar and to do list accordingly.
5- Dedicate you slow times to read the less priority emails and then decided whether to keep or remove them.
Finally pick certain times to manage your email unless your business requires you to be glued to your email all day. The steps above are intended to increase productivity and improve your business needs.