Too many emails can bog you down, so rather than being overwhelmed by the unread messages in your inbox, take charge. Entrepreneur Bryan Lee used his previous experience as a firefighter and a popular productivity tool to create a system to sort his emails.
In emergencies, firefighters use different colour-coded labels to tag patients to determine their priority. With your inbox, Lee uses these colours and the Eisenhower matrix of productivity to divide messages into four colours, as shown above. Go through all the unread or unaddressed messages in your inbox and start labelling them with one of those four colours.
The advantage of this system is that you can use the firefighters’ codes to know the action to take with each label:
- Red (urgent and important): Do it now
- Yellow (important, not urgent): Decide when to do it
- Green (urgent, not important): Delegate it
- Grey (not urgent, not important): Dump it
With this system in place, you should be better equipped to deal with email overload. Check out the full post below for some email management tools that Lee recommends.