Sending lots of emails to your colleagues is one of the worst things you could do to them this week. It gives them extra ‘busy work’ to do (reading, replying or deleting all sucks up valuable time), can lead to stress and reduce the amount of time they can devote to the ‘real work’ that adds value to your business and customers.
As I reflect on the 4 annual ‘No Email Day’ which took place on Friday 4/4/14 I’d like you to stop and think about how much email you are sending (and receiving) each day and consider alternative methods of communication to get the job done.
When I announced the world’s first global No Email Day on 11/11/11, it struck a chord. My original 9-page manifesto was read over 30,000 times in one month on Slideshare after being featured on The Next Web and covered by BBC Radio 5 Live, Wall Street Journal, Wired, Lifehacker and The Sunday Times. (At the time of writing it’s had over 50,000 views).
It soon went viral with thousands of people around the world Tweeting, Sharing and blogging their support for the campaign. Something was clearly wrong with the way email was being used.
Since then, No Email Day has continued to build momentum and support, becoming an annual event with 12/12/12, 3/3/13 and now 4/4/14 all acting as a focal point for people who can see the value in working ‘Outside their Inbox’ in a more social and collaborative way.
People continue to blog and complain about information overload and some exciting tech start-ups have appeared which all try to help people tackle the problem.
By using Social Media I’ve been able to discover and share some amazing tools, tips and advice on how to manage your workload better so you can be more productive, efficient and happier at work via our Facebook Page at www.facebook.com/NoEmailDay and Twitter account @NoEmailDayHQ.
But could you really live without email, even just for a one day?
Former IBM Social Media Evangelist Luis Suarez has been living in ‘A World Without Email‘ since February 2008 and both he and Paul Jones (University of North Carolina) are key supporters of No Email Day and of replacing email with social media (see their great videos athttp://uk.sageone.com/2014/04/01/no-email-day/).
Luis and Paul have been a great inspiration to me since 2011 and I feel closer and more connected to them than I do to people who only ever communicate with me by email. This is despite the fact that we live in England, Gran Canaria and the USA, have never exchanged an email between each other and instead using our blogs, Twitter and Google+ to share ideas and support one another from afar.
But it’s not just a bunch of ‘radical individuals’ who are championing the cause. Thierry Breton (Chairman and CEO of IT consultancy Atos) declared that they would stop sending internal email completely and Matt Cutts (Google’s Head of Webspam Team) recently blogged about his need to ditch email for 30 days so he could help more people at once by using his awesome videos.
Big businesses are getting involved too so they can free up more of their time and promote a more collaborative way of working both internally and externally. It was especially exciting to have Microsoft UK’s Social Media team and conference call company Powwownow get behind No Email Day 4/4/14.
If you’d like to know more about No Email Day and show your support, please visithttp://plandigitaluk.com/no-email-day, Follow us on Twitter @NoEmailDayHQ and Tweet your comments, tips or advice including the #noemailday hashtag.