Everybody wants to achieve a healthy balance between work and life, but it is quite difficult to do so. In this modern world, it is challenging to detach from technology, as it has become the source of both our enjoyment and work productivity. People are glued to digital technology without even realizing what is too much from what is enough. Technology is also trespassing the boundaries of what was used to be a “home”, and a “workplace”. This accounts to a more complicated dilemma in the process.
The smartphone is one powerful device that is both blessing and curse for some. In the modern business, it is one useful tool for increasing the productivity of an individual in the workplace, or even when outside. It made employees more flexible with working, which also paved the way for more people to explore the opportunities of working full time from home. But it also opened that door that used to separate work from personal life. People have become more efficient with their down times, but they work from their homes or vacations.There is really no stopping the clock with these situations.
While we cannot halt the world from evolving, we can stop from chasing that perfect balance. Instead, we can focus on prioritizing and setting our own personal boundaries. This is where discipline and self motivation comes to play. One should overcome the guilt to set aside time for personal growth, because this is not only important for sustaining the passion to live, but to increase the chances of regaining back the control of our lives.
Stress in the workplace is one of the leading causes of decreased productivity, health deterioration, damaged personal relationships, and high employee turnover. In fact, a survey in 2014 said that unhappy workers are less productive by about 10%. And 60% in 26,000 employees would rather shift into a new career because of their unhappiness in the current workplace.
High level stress can significantly impact the way business runs. It is imperative that both employees and executives assume responsibility of, if not totally eradicating, at least minimizing the causes of stress in the workplace.
Efficient time management is one of the keys to better living off with the effects of stress. Stress is an inevitable part of work, but we have the choice to limit it enough to have a positive influence over us. Just like too much stress is harmful, too little of it, may result in boredom due to lack of challenges. Enough stress can drive us to be better versions of ourselves. Competition can also lead us to pursue lifelong learning, in order to improve our skills.
According to lifehack.org, here are some tips on how to improve time management skills in the workplace:
- Refrain from having a “can do all” mentality, which is difficult to sustain, and may introduce a high level of stress. Instead, divert to delegation of tasks to other workers that may have less load, or have the better skills for it.
- Make a list of today’s priorities, first thing in the morning. This way, you can have a guideline for all the tasks needed to accomplish. Just make sure that the list is achievable and have some room for some unexpected situations.
- Avoid stress as much as you can.
- Learn the habit of scheduling and setting deadlines. As much as possible, refrain from multitasking as this robs us of our full attention to each task, which may lead to decreased quality of work, performance and productivity.
- Start early, don’t forget to take breaks, and learn how to say “No”.
Communication is what binds all processes and relationship involved in a business organization and its network. Effective communication relies on human skills, business tools, and technology in order to achieve. Being on the front end and back end of business operations, it also becomes a source of stress and sometimes, a distraction, in the workplace. If not utilized properly, communication may lead to loss of customers due to misunderstandings and distrust. Inappropriate communication may also ruin a rather brilliant marketing idea. Too impersonal communication, may lead to uninterested customers.
An email is one of the oldest form of communication utilized in the business world. It still stands today as one of the most effective and preferred means of communicating with clients and businesses. Because of its simplicity and ease in using, as well as its familiarity and convenience, are just some of the reasons why workers are drawn to it.Itis also a one of the primary revenue drivers in a business, and among the marketing agents, has one of the highest lead conversions.
They say, your email inbox will say a lot of things about you. Quite unfair, isn’t it? But really, it’s hard to maintain a clean inbox nowadays, especially that businesses grow, customers are more demanding for information, and email marketing is flourishing. Adding to that, are the tasks in the workplace that we face every day, and our personal preferences in what we want to know.
Email Management System
Stress over email management can be minimized by having an efficient email management system.We are in the time of history that we wanted to be always informed, connected and on the go. Our struggle for work-life balance is associated with our decisions, and is definitely not a hopeless case. Using an email in business should work for us, and not us working for it. Time management and setting priorities are some of the ways to make technology more beneficial than it has a negative influence over. Here are some of the best practices we can adopt on how to improve our productivity in time and email management:
- Control spam emails.
Spam messages are malicious, often threatening, which when clicked will either send you to download a malware and destroy your computer or device, or lead you to a scam. If you did not sign up for any of the emails that suggests any suspicious actions from you like asking for your personal information, delete those immediately. You can also activate your email’s spam filter, which can automatically block emails of such kind before it gets into your inbox.
- Take action immediately.
Take action over emails that require you to do so right way, in order to free up your mind and have less stress over dealing with your emails. Unopened emails reminds you of more things to do, making you feel more pressured and limited. In some cases that taking an action may require you more time, move the email to your “To Do” folder and set a reminder for it later.
- Unsubscribe and turn off notifications.
Go a run-through over your email newsletter subscriptions and unsubscribe immediately to those that you don’t read or need anymore. Also, turn off email and alert notifications for your social media accounts, to avoid adding up to your pile of email to deal, and will also refrain you to be tempted to look at it too.
- Limit the use of “Reply to All” feature.
Be careful with using this feature, especially when you intend the reply to the sender only. Send it directly to the person involved, which also helps other recipient’s inboxes free from unwanted mails.
- Avoid putting email addresses in public sites.
Avoid placing your email address in public sites like blogs, forums, or message boards. This is where spam crawlers hunt for email addresses to involve with their scams.
- Create Folders.
Organize your emails by assigning them right away to their respective folder upon receipt. Create a not too overly broad categories to keep it simple and easily identified. An email management tool can also implement email routing, which automatically categorizes your incoming emails according to set criteria in order to minimize your time in organizing.
- Make email rules and policies.
Designating rules for checking and response times may also be effective in sticking to a regular email time. If there will be such rules, inform your colleagues and those whom you have frequent interaction and correspondence with, so they will know what they can expect from you. Advice them that if they have immediate concerns, they may instead reach you on your mobile phone or office landline.
- Send less.
This is a universal technique, and may be beneficial to be more direct and accurate with your responses with different concerns that you may face in the workplace. There are many communication channels available that one may utilize, and it is best to use it too for your advantage, and for the greater benefit of your clients.
Email Management Tools
Dealing with large volumes of emails could be a different story for your business. This can be prevalent in large scale businesses that have an internal customer service center which deals with a significant amount of emails everyday and employs several dedicated people to do it. A traditional email server implementation for these kind of situations may render ineffective and cause customer service representatives to work isolated with each other, with no centralized system and repository to gather customer data and conversation histories.
An email management software is a powerful tool that contains features that are relevant to establishing an effective email management system. It also maintains its performance despite of large volumes of emails a business receives everyday.
An inbox management software is consistent with delivering powerpacked benefits for businesses who are needing efficient solutions to their email management woes:
This makes distribution of loads more efficiently, wherein the best email management tools intelligently analyzes first the loads of the customer service agents and designates email accordingly. It also automates the initial acknowledgement response to emails, which can indicate that a customer will be contacted right away to entertain his query.
- Accurate and targeted answers
A customer agent can keep track of the conversation history of a customer who makes a follow up, which can make subsequent responses timely and accurate. It also minimizes starting from scratch by asking to repeat a query.
An email management app can also yield additional insights about a particular email, to help in making more accurate and targeted responses based on customer data.
- Captures customer data
Customer data is an important aspect which contains useful insights, potentials and opportunities for the business. This way, customer can make more effective solutions to concerns, and introduce products that are relevant to his needs. It can also help in performing performance evaluations, which can show areas for improvement. This can also contribute in realizing a more accurate ROI.
- Centralizes processes
Email management tools are created to serve as centralized platforms for all processes and systems where customer agents can engage in collaborative work. Collaborative work increase efficiency in addressing critical concerns, and also encourages collaborative training and learning among members of the team. A centralized system for email management enable a streamlined workflow to achieve.
- Email routing
Email routing is essential in building a more organized, shared inbox, wherein incoming emails are sorted out by the system prior to reaching the inbox. It automatically designates emails to its corresponding folder according to a specified criteria indicated by the user.
- Email tracking
Email tracking software is an intelligent tool that can know whether an email has been opened, or its attachments downloaded. These activities can be converted into metrics, which can then measure the effectiveness of the email marketing strategies of the business.
Achieving that healthy balance between work and play is still attainable using the necessary time management skills and the right business tool for your needs. Check out these reviews of email management tools for an overview of the actual benefits of using an email management software for a business.
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