The More Efficient Way to Schedule Meetings

How much time do you spend going back and forth with others via email to schedule meetings — and then, all too frequently, to reschedule them? Ross McCammon wrote a funny and useful column for the July issue of Entrepreneur magazine about how to reschedule more efficiently, and I’m happy to be part of it. […]

Try This Secret Weapon for Work-Life Balance

Work-life balance used to be a lot more straightforward: When you were at work, you worked. And when you weren’t at the office, you were engaged in the rest of life. Technology, of course, has complicated everything. Today, our work can find us even when we’re far from the office, and steal our attention away from […]

4 Overlooked Ways Your Workplace Sabotages Employee Productivity

Have you set up your workplace to support employee productivity? Are you sure? In my latest article for Harvard Business Review, 4 Organizational Mistakes That Plague Modern Knowledge Workers, I talk about some often-overlooked factors that could be holding your employees back from getting their best results. Bad email habits. Your team needs uninterrupted stretches […]

Checking Email After Work Is Common–But Unproductive

Are you in the habit of checking email outside of the office? If so, how does this habit affect your life? HBR.org asked its readers to weigh in on questions like these after one of my articles for the site, “Your Late-Night Emails Are Hurting Your Team,” struck a chord. The responses to the survey give […]

Effective Communication Means Taming Your Email

Remember back when we thought email was going to be a breakthrough for effective communication at the office? Today, we’re more likely to view email as a major annoyance and, worse, a distraction from the meaningful work we really should be doing. Writing for Huffpost Business, etiquette consultant Jodi R.R. Smith has compiled a roundup […]

Improve Your Culture – Control Corporate Email

Think a Ban on After-Hours Email is Crazy? Think Again. For years, I suggested to my clients that they consider having corporate policies for after hours email. Portable technology plus bad user habits contribute to an “always-on” environment that is bad for employees and bad for the businesses that employ them. My clients thought I […]

CRM, PIM, PCM – Oh My! What Types of Contact Managers Do You Need?

I often hear from people who are confused about a good solution for managing their contacts.  I tell them our conversation needs to begin with identifying the needs for the contacts, and I’ve found that for some people, a combination of tools is the right answer for them. The first use of contact tools is […]

Effective Communication: Use a Talk To List

The thoughts ping you at random: “I need to talk to Brenda about pushing back this deliverable…” An hour later: “I have to ask Joe about the pricing for the client proposal….”  Twenty minutes after that: “I wonder if Luis has finished researching new project management tools….” If you stop and act, every time it […]

Email Etiquette: CC and BCC Are Not Your Friends

Do you work at a company where everyone is copied on everything?  My work has shown me that so much email a company generates is unnecessary, ineffective, and primarily unread.  Many of these are sent as a cc or a bcc.  The fact that these acronyms stand for “carbon copy” and “blind carbon copy” should […]

Track Conversations with “Post in this Folder”

As I explain in my training on the Empowered Productivity System, keeping details in your head causes stress — for example, that racing brain that keeps you awake at night. You might track information well when it’s an email or other electronic or physical format, but what about a conversation?  Have you ever emailed yourself?  […]