Evolve – Don’t press the send button! – Please!
The reason why I write this, is because email has become what future generations will refer to as the digital plague. It may not kill us physically, but it will stress us down, and burn our brain cells in a toxic steam of stress hormons.
The first thing you should ask yourself before sending an email is: “would I write this on a postcard to anybody!” – If yes then send it, otherwise STOP and think!
Always remember an email is nothing but a postcard, it is NOT an advanced way of communicating. There is a lot of advanced technology involved, but that is not the same!
It is not a procrastination tool.
To many emails are just a way to procrastinate something that should have been dealt with upfront. So help yourself, don’t use email as a procrastination tool to delegate to someone else in vague terms what you didn’t take the time to think about yourself – be responsible!
It is not a collaboration tool
Only use cc if you want to inform a group of people about something, email is bad for conversations, decision making (use easypolls), discussing when to meet (doodle instead), brainstorming (use cookboad.me instead), don’t use email for maintaining lists on what you agreed on at a meeting (check out afterthemeeting),
and check out what orchestratormail or ccloop got going! Evolve your digital communication skills!
It is not a conflict solving tool
Rather it’s very good at creating conflicts. Be avare that your brain is wired in a way that makes you immune to how other people feel, when you cannot see or hear them. The send button is like killing somebody with a missile 1000 miles away istead of telling it to their face ie. killing them with your bare hands. The missile is nice and clean, but the method does carry collateral damage that is your responsability.
Don’t burn my brain, or anybody else’s… – STOP using email for everything!
It’s just a postcard, NOT something to build your business, your life upon!
We need better tools than email, because email has not evolved as a tool from back when we sat at our desk, bound to a workstation we couldn’t carry with a lousy internet connection.
Email has not evolved along with the way we work and the way we use technology. Revolt!
Updated 24 july 2011:
@tedchris recently posted this: help create an email charter
Image from flickr