This is part 2 in a series on reducing the amount of incoming email. You can read part 1 here.
You are not the only one that has trouble keeping up with the flow of incoming email. And I am hardly the first one to talk about it. It just seems to be such a tough problem to beat for so many people. I do not have a silver bullet, holy grail or seen the light. But I have made some simple changes that made the handling email a lot more manageable. And why keep that to myself? I don't know, so here you go :-)
With less time spent on checking email, you have more time do create something of value. When dealing with your email, you are mostly reactive, instead of pro-active or creative.
After having a look at twitter yesterday, today's service that is awesome but also very keen on sending many emails is LinkedIn. Setting up for which event you want to receive an email, can be a little bit confusing at first as there is no "On/Off" switch. Instead, you set the frequency of the e-mails you want to receive.
So, what's the frequency (Kenneth)?
There is no "turn off email" button in LinkedIn, like there is in Twitter. However, you can set the frequency for which you receive the various e-mail. There are 7 different "frequencies" to choose from, although not all frequencies are available to all events. The first 4 are the most common:
- Individual Email. You will receive a message for each event when it happens (new connection request, InMail message, profile sent to you, job posting, etc)
- Daily digest. All messages for the event you have this frequency for, will be accumulated and sent to you once a day
- Weekly digest. Like #2-Daily Digest, but sent to you once a week
- No Email. Pretty obvious, right?
- Every Two Weeks. Available for selected events in the "Messages for LinkedIn" section.
- Periodic Email. Pretty vague term, also only in "Messages for LinkedIn"
- When InFluencers you're following post. This is only available for setting the frequency of "LinkedIn Pulse" in the "Updates and News section"
Your turn to take a wild guess which of those three I have used the most? Right, #4!
There are 20 general topics or events LinkedIn allows you to set the email frequency for. In addition, you can set it for each group you joined in a separate pane.
Get me to the settings already!
- Go to LinkedIn and login if you haven't already
- Hover over you profile picture in the righthand corner and see "Privacy & Settings", click on the word "Manage" right next to it.
- In the page that follows, click on "Communications" in the menu on the left, just underneath your profile information, then click on "Set email frequency"
- You can also use this link to go to the email frequency settings page directly.
- Click on the images above to get an idea what to look for if you have trouble finding your way through the menu's
After this, you are greeted with the various categories for which you can setup the email frequency. There are five categories in which the events are grouped:
- Messages from other members
- Updates and news
- Group digests
- Messages from LinkedIn
Clicking on each of these titles on the settings page will open the settings for that category. Take a few minutes to carefully go through each setting. Don't forget to hit the big blue "Save changes" button at the end of each section.
There are very few messages I need instantly in my inbox, and I do not want to see any "Updates and News" and "Messages from LinkedIn" messages at all. The notifications (likes, comments, etc) may look interesting to get instantly notified about, but remember that as soon as you see that message appear in your inbox, you are likely to stop doing what you were doing and be distracted.
It is really asking for distraction if you keep your inbox open all the time, especially with the "new mail notification" on. So, I plan moments in the day to check my email and then close it again. And LinkedIn, like email and twitter, is just another "inbox" that you can check and then move away from it, to focus on something more important :-)
And that's another few minutes saved by preventing email overflow. More time to make music or play with the dog, or both.