Last week, our founder Fabrice shared a long, thorough article from Gulf News: “Time management is ruining our lives” . Author Oliver Burkeman sets out nothing less than a longitudinal history of time management, from ancient Greeks to productivity apps and life hacks. Ladies and gentlemen…Mr. Merlin Mann! One of the central figures in recent chapters of this story is Merlin Mann, father of “Inbox Zero”—the notion that maintaining an empty inbox is the best way to use email productively. We’ve talked about Mr. Mann here before, in an article called “The False Utopia of Inbox Zero.” So, context-wise, you can… Continue reading Merlin Mann for President: The Case Against Inbox Zero and Empty Productivity
I recently found one of my favorite passages ever written about email, in a select/all article from last year that I somehow missed when it first came out: “In fact, email’s simple strength is exactly why people mistake it for the real problems they face: It adapts to systems (and neuroses) so smoothly and transparently that it seems to create them, rather than enable them.” Complaining about email is like looking into a simple, well-made, perfectly smooth mirror and saying “Ewww, gross! This mirror has a bunch of pimples in it!” Sorry, man. It is not the mirror that’s blemished. We’ve discussed this… Continue reading Why You Can’t Fix Email By Fixing Email
Have you ever seen a TV show or a movie and thought, “Holy crap, this is totally my life. It’s like the writers must be stalking me and my friends!”? This has in fact never happened to me. But I did get a similar feeling when I read Zach Hanlon’s fantastic new article at Fast Company, “The Only Five Email Folders Your Inbox Will Ever Need“: “Holy crap, this is totally Timyo! It’s like Fast Company must be stalking Fabrice and Alfred!” The title pretty much says it all, as the article delineates an easy and effective way to organize email.… Continue reading The Ultimate Email Life Hack: It’s Time.
A couple weeks back, we shared an interesting article at Medium by Tristan Harris, who, among other things, is a former Design Ethicist at Google. The article, “How Technology Hijacks People’s Minds—from a Magician and Google’s Design Ethicist” is a wide-ranging read on how tech companies use a keen understanding of behavior psychology to “hijack” our attention and get us to engage with their products and services the way they want. For example, he discusses menu choice (i.e. the options available to the user on an offered menu) as a kind of misdirection which reframes our desires to better align with the… Continue reading No One’s In Charge Here—Why It’s On Us To Fix Email Together
Fabrice alerted me to a good article at business2community.com that asks “Does Banning Out of Hours Email Increase Employee Engagement?” It’s an interesting question, very pertinent to Timyo’s mission. It’s also a question that’s been lately in the news, since, as per the article: “New laws came into force in France on January 1, which gave employees the choice of whether to open and respond to emails outside their normal working hours. The ‘right to disconnect’, part of a portfolio of new labour laws which have sparked protests across the country, aims, among other things, to prevent burnout.” Author Jill… Continue reading Email bans are the wrong way to go!
“The strength of the team is each individual member. The strength of each member is the team.” —Phil Jackson Last week, we started our look at some great tips from recent articles about team productivity. Here are the final four: 5. Clear Expectations are Key. From Time Management Ninja we have “9 Ways for Bosses to Boost Their Team Productivity”, which includes the following helpful insight: “Communication is one of the tops things that bogs down team productivity. Set clear expectations around how the team should communicate. This should cover everyday communications, as well as status updates.” By helping to… Continue reading 8 Great Tips to Improve Team Productivity: Part II
This week, we shared an article by Scott Gerber over at business.com: “9 Most Effective Apps for Internal Communication“. Gerber is the founder of the Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC), and he polled its members to find exciting solutions to team communications. I read the list and was surprised not by what I found, but what I didn’t find: almost any mention of email. I guess I shouldn’t have been surprised. Email has long been the workhorse of electronic communications—saddled with all of the jobs that no one else wants to do. When a fancy new product comes along that promises real-time… Continue reading Put Me In, Coach! Why Email is the Next Great Team Productivity App
Last week, Slate ran a fun article by Katy Waldman discussing the emerging etiquette regarding all of the many, many ways we can communicate with each other in 2016. Per the author: “The avenues through which we talk to one another have forked into a dizzying multitude. Hierarchies have emerged.” She then goes into anxiety-inducing detail about those hierarchies: When possible, we convey bad news in person; a step down, there are phone calls; then email; then texting; then social media like Facebook or Twitter; then IMing; then, maybe, Snapchat. Sometimes, the line of succession wavers: A quick face-to-face catch-up with… Continue reading The Etiquette of Email
Earlier this week we shared an article from Inc.com called “Should You Reply to That Email?”, a brief article about how to read an email for clues on whether a response is needed, and if so, when and what kind of response you’d like to send. It was good advice, and a useful article. I can’t wait for it to be obsolete. “Look for clues.” The author, Stacey Gawronski, correctly identifies the trickiness of figuring out a sender’s expectations: her first tip is “Look for Clues”, because too often when dealing with the status quo, a recipient has to become… Continue reading When Email Expectations Become What’s Expected
Yesterday we shared an interesting article from Julie Beck at The Atlantic: “Thank Heaven for Email Clichés”. Beck raises a couple of points that are pertinent to Timyo: 1. Expectations are important. “To some degree, this is the expectation of all of us who send emails professionally—a kind greeting and a kind sign-off to sandwich the actual message. That’s not a bad thing, when the alternative is requests and demands splatted on your screen without a buffer of civility.” It’s easy to decry email clichés like “I hope you’re well” and “Best” as empty and insincere, but, as Beck points… Continue reading Clear Expectations and Email Clichés