You’re drowning in email. It wastes hours of your day and drains your energy. And it does the same thing to your employees. With a total cost in the hundreds if not millions of dollars a year to your business.

Here is one simple email secret to help make the situation better.

Sort your “sent” email folder by sender and determine who are the 3-5 people you send the most email to, almost always they will be internal team members inside your company.

Next, arrange a conversation with them and ask them the following question:

“What 3-5 things could I change about how I email you that would make your life better and your day more productive?”

You’ll be amazed as you’ll hear things like:

I wish you’d send me more bulleted lists than paragraph narratives.” Or…

I’d like you to stop forwarding me all those ‘ideas’ you just send when they are top of mind, I never know what you really want or expect me to do with them. I’d rather you just hold them on your own list and when they are important, bring them up in a conversation when we have our weekly team meeting.” Or…

Can you stop cc’ing me into all those project threads? Because then I get about 10 more emails later that day or the next as everyone else things they need to include me in the response.” Or…

I’d rather you just send me one email on a project rather than 3 or 4 each day.”

I think you get the idea.

The key is to lower your defensive shield and just listen. These are your peers telling you how you can help them be more productive and effective. You are all on the same team so helping them win helps you win.

Now reverse the conversation and share with them your 3-5 requests for how you want them to email you so that you can be more productive.

This is a simple practice to start in your company. As you do it, share the stories so that it gains traction. And make sure to repeat the process six months down the line to get a second round of productivity gains.

If you would like more ideas on how you can grow your business by becoming more productive I encourage you to join me for an upcoming private web training I am conducting. Click here for more information and to register for free.