You’ve Got Mail – How Responsive Are You?

As I chisel away at the many steps involved  in publishing a book, this great newsletter on Email Responsiveness landed in my emails. It’s by Tasha Eurich author of the book, Insight

A reminder – Insight  is about self-awareness. I continue to be impacted by what she says about self-awareness. I wrote a blog about the book last July.  She makes a clear distinction between self-awareness and navel-gazing. She takes us deeper into how to get reliable information about ourselves to make our self-awareness real.

Her point:  It takes ongoing, intentional feedback from a trusted loving critic for us to reach balanced self-awareness.   

My point today: Life and work is about meaningful connections, and insights can come from unexpected sources.

Who knew that Email Responsiveness could be one of those sources?

Here are some insights into what email responsiveness has to say about what others may think of you.

  •  First of all, this is not to prompt guilting or shaming your current email response practices, or to escalate email obsessiveness.  This is a healthy perspective about the realities of emails and relationships. That’s all.
  • Why this is a hot topic ? There were 269 billion emails sent daily in 2017. Yikes!
  • Reality: How we respond to emails communicates who you are and impacts how people see you. According to Eurich, these 2 points are real.
  • Full disclosure – When I worked in organizations, I never thought about what email responsiveness – as a gestalt-  communicated to others. I responded to each email based on its individual nature (stat v. FYI, etc). I never thought about what that said about me.  Hmmm.
  • Research shows that responding in a timely manner shows that you are conscientious — organized, dependable and hardworking.  OK…
  • “Not answering email damages our reputation and our relationships. In one study, people who took two weeks to respond to an email were assigned more negative intentions and were viewed as less credible than their responsive counterparts.”
  • “When you’re reliable, people want to be on your team.” – Whoa. I know that this is true.  Emails are about the relationships I want to be a part of?
  • So, Eurich suggests these simple things:
    • Get organized and connect with those you respect. Talk to one of your buddies who has balanced (healthy) email practices and find out how s/he does it.
    • Acknowledge email receipt.  Everyone is busy, but “Got your email. Will reply as soon as I can”  honors the relationship and buys you time.    I recently got an email from one of my publishing company reps that said, “This is to acknowledge receipt of your email.”   That made me feel good.
    • A “no” is better than no response.  If someone asks for something that you can’t or won’t do, just tell them so directly.  “No response is not the new ‘No’.”  “Most of us can handle rejection. We can’t handle not knowing.”
    • Eurich also makes 2 distinctions:   Don’t “… waste too much energy feeling guilty about ignoring strangers who spam you, or those that are not polite in their requests.”

 The Message-  Don’t let the chaos of the day interrupt our connections with others.

By the Way, My book will be available through my website and Amazon in mid- May.  YEA!!

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