A few of us Smart Dolphins folk watched a webinar a few weeks ago on how to institute change in the workplace.  During one of the examples given in the webinar, the presenter suggested that Microsoft should remove the Reply to All button from Outlook. His thinking is that by the removal of this button, productivity on a worldwide scale would increase dramatically. Small change, massive end result.

When you’re hitting the Reply To All button, take a couple of extra seconds and decide if it is really necessary. Why not target your recipients directly instead? If your email is worth reading then it’s also worth spending the few seconds to direct it to the right people.

Too often we start a conversation by emailing a distribution group (or just multiple people) and then everybody in that group is part of the conversation forever. Instead, take the time to prune the recipients down once the target audience is determined. I don’t care what the email is about; if you send someone something that they don’t need to read you will waste a minimum of 10 seconds of their time. They have to open the email, process it in their brains, and then deal with it (delete!). I’m not sure about you, but that takes me a lot more than 10 seconds most of the time.

So be mindful of the CC frenzy, your use of Distribution Groups, and the Reply to All button. By doing so, you’re helping everybody be more productive!