The auto responder could be the most productive email tool you never thought of. Here’s why…
Most of us configure an auto responder once or maybe twice a year for Christmas and the weeks when we take annual leave – a hastily written line announcing your temporary departure from the rat race and providing alternative contact details should the enquiry be of an urgent nature.
These are the email replies that Outlook refers to as ‘Out of Office’ messages and Gmail calls the ‘Vacation reply’. But now some key business innovators are pioneering a wider use of these systems as an essential tool to help boost productivity.
So forget rules, flags and sub folders, maybe the auto responder is the most productive email tool you never thought of. Here are a few of the ways this feature is being put to use by the movers and shakers.
Cofounder of the Women Innovate Mobile (WIM) accelerator, Kelly Hoey advocates using an auto responder all year round to improve her time management. Feeling duty-bound to reply to emails as quickly as possible, Hoey was frequently unable to commit time to important projects during the day as she waded through a bulging inbox, responding to more urgent but less pressing tasks.
Hoey says this pressure is symptomatic of our always-available culture commenting that when it comes to email communication “we expect information to come immediately, so we feel a responsibility to spit information out immediately.”