Adam Overland has some great gleanings from the U's Quality Fair, held in February 2010. Overland features one poster from Arthur Hill, the John and Nancy Lindahl Professor for Excellence in Business Education at the Carlson School of Management, who presented "Personal Operations Management: Lean Principles for Getting Good Things Done." The article describes some of Dr. Hill's advice about managing email and time. The three items I found most helpful were:
- Abide by the two-minute rule--if it takes less than two minutes, do it now.
- Write short emails with very concise and meaningful subject lines and do not cc unless absolutely necessary--very often, the cc is not necessary and is a waste of many people's time.
- Reduce the number of emails you write to reduce the number you receive. Do not write a "thank you" email every time you receive a correspondence.
I just read the article today, so no word on how much more efficient I will be after following some of these tips. I do find the cc's difficult at times to track - generally it is better to have too much information. At the same time, there are times I spend more time trying to figure out why I was cc'd on something than I should be. I also do abide by the two minute rule for tasks at home, but never thought of applying the rule to email at work.
What is your favorite productivity tip?