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HBR Guide to Getting the Right Work Done (HBR Guide Series) by Harvard Business Review

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Chapter 25

Eight E-mail Overload Experiments

by Alexandra Samuel

If you’ve tried all of the basic ways to structure and manage your e-mail, but are still feeling overwhelmed, here are eight road-tested experiments for battling e-mail overload that range from reasonable to radical. Try each one, or a couple at a time—but push yourself to the very limits of your comfort zone, because the tactics that seem most inconceivable may be just the ones that help you discover a new way to work more effectively with e-mail.

If your company’s culture includes expecting instant replies to every message, e-mail your colleagues and regular correspondents to let them know about your experiment. This will help avoid ruffled feathers over some of the more radical ...

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