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An obituary to my inbox

Times up. It’s finally happened. Game over.

My inbox at work has reached the point of no return. It’s no longer useful. All it does is cause waste. As far as I’m concerned it’s dead.

Going to the toilet (only a tinkle) and coming back to 15 emails is not normal. Having to delete over 100 emails in order to send one is not normal. Not being able to identify what’s important in a slew of noise is becoming normal. So I give up. I refuse to play this constant game of cat and mouse anymore. It leaves me with virtually no time for actual work.

It does nothing for me other than being a constant distraction and leaving me stressed and feeling like I’m not good enough. Not good enough for a zero inbox. Not good enough to manage my information diet. And because of that I’m happy to say it’s over. I simply cannot keep up, and I’m totally exhausted trying.

Anyway it all feels a bit old hat now doesn’t it?

Workflow systems allow me to request stuff and track their progress.

Phone calls (remember that) and instant messaging tools enable me to have quick conversations with colleagues in different offices.

Oh and there’s this old fashioned thing called face to face contact that seems to be having a mini rebirth. Thank f*ck.

I think one of the catalysts for this change is the fact that I no longer get emails from my manager – I get a text or a What’sap message because he (and his boss) suffer from the same problem. Weird that in today’s corporate world the majority of us seems to be experiencing the same issue, yet the problem only worsens.

Time to do something about it me thinks.

So from here on in – I’ve added an auto response to any messages that I’m cc’d into stating the following ‘thanks for the email. Unfortunately I get loads, as I’m in the cc field for this one I’ve automatically filed it as a lower priority that those addressed to me. I will get to it, but probably not straight away, so if something needs a response or needs my urgent attention please contact me directly and let me know.’

And I will only visit to pay my respects twice a day for 30 mins.

And I will limit my own use to sending a maximum of 10 emails a day.

Let’s see if this new approach works. Unfortunately in the environment I work my career would be dead too if I just refused to use email, so this is my way of having minimal activity and minimal usage.

Bottom line – If something is that damn important that it needs your attention then someone should bloody well walk up to you and ask. Or call. Or text. But for gods sake please don’t bother emailing anymore – it won’t get read quick enough or maybe even be found at all.

So goodbye inbox. Our relationship has turned a corner and there’s no way back. It’s not me it’s you. And it wasn’t even nice knowing you.

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