If there’s one thing that consistently stresses out small business owners more consistently than anything else, it’s the dreaded inbox. Especially as an appraiser, I get 3 or 4 hundred emails per day – actual messages, not spam. Seeing all that unread mail in your inbox can set nerves on edge, even for the most stalwart among us. So, what do you do?
I use the filtering application provided by Gmail (I’m pretty sure Outlook has a similar function, if you’re a Microsoft user). If you find that you’re doing the same thing with similar emails, this is a great tool to use! It allows a robot to do a lot of the work of sorting through emails for you, so you have less you need to do. For instance, if I’ve tried unsubscribing from a certain company’s spam mail, I can use the filter to send those emails straight to spam anyway. It can also be used for more complex functions. I usually use it for my employees.
For example, when I receive a payment, two things need to happen. First, the payment needs to be entered into ANOW, and I have a someone in my office that does that for me. The other thing that needs to happen is checking the bank account to make sure the payment actually went through. My office manager doesn’t need to read the email, just forward it to me and the person in charge of ANOW, and then archive it. With a filtering service, I can take 5 minutes to make that happen with every email about payment, and make it skip the inbox altogether. It saves my office manager time forwarding the same email all the time, and makes sure that everything gets where it needs to be without crowding my office manager’s inbox.
When you find yourself getting overwhelmed with a full inbox, consider using this trick. It will not only save you time, but it will help clean up your inbox from the moment an email is sent to you., with comparatively little work done on your part. It’s an all-around win.
For more information on this subject, please download and listen to The Appraiser Coach Podcast Episode: