Inundated with calls, texts, IMs and emails, entrepreneur Cyrus Stoller has set up rules for communicating with him, based on how urgently you need him to respond. It’s a trick that might serve everyone well for people you communicate with regularly.
There are some people you talk with regularly, whether it’s your family, your close friends or your colleagues. Soon enough, that turns into a mess of communication, with people calling you for trivial things or emailing you for important stuff that needs to get down right away. And even a three-second distraction can derail your work. Stoller’s method is meant to streamline this and reduce disruptions.
tl;dr If you need something to be done in:
30 minutes: call
two hours: text
a day or later: email
That’s just a precis of Stoller’s full post, which says that how people get in touch with you should be dictated by the urgency of the action needed from you. Consequently, it lets you decide how promptly to address someone. If you need to share these rules quickly with anyone, a reader of Stoller’s turned them into a static web page at gettingintou.ch.
You don’t need to adhere to Stoller’s rules and can set up your own. A WhatsApp message might be your highest priority item and a call might be reserved for interruptions. Regardless of how you set it up, Stoller recommends having explicit rules for how people can get in touch with you.