Taming the email monster

Lovely idea from Linda Stone

Then, between 2000-2002, when I was working for Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, it wasn’t unusual for my inbox to have a thousand new emails a day. Everybody and their dog seemed to be on email. I filed, filtered, deleted, and delegated. And I called my mother on the weekends.

When I left Microsoft, my emails tapered off to 100-200 a day. In 2006, met Bruno, a mid-level manager in Silicon Valley. When I sent him an email, a message bounced back into my inbox:

“My email response time is 1-2 weeks. 

If you need immediate assistance, you can I.M. me between 9:30 a.m. and 6:30 pm PST or call me between 9:30 -11 a.m. PST.

For issues related to contracts, please contact…”

Bruno, GenY and twenty-something, named three communication tools: email, I.M., and the telephone. He spelled out his response habits. That got my attention.
Why don’t we all take a cue from Bruno? We could start a social movement. We can take back the inbox. I’ll call it eFree.