Reduce Your Email Workload with the Three-Email Rule

Author

Patrick Allan

May 23, 2015

You can be a lot more productive when you have to spend less time explaining things over email. By setting a limit on how many times you’re willing to discuss something over email, you can reduce your workload and avoid any miscommunication.

Emails have the potential to turn into long, drawn out message chains that fill up your inbox and eat away at precious working hours. Phil Simon, the author of Message Not Received, recommends you invoke the “three-email rule”:

Put as succinctly as possible, after three messages, it’s time to talk. In my email signature, you’ll find that very rule… I abide by a three-email rule. After three, we talk.

By limiting an email conversation to three emails—and informing the other party of it in your signature—it will force you and the other party to be as clear as possible in your emails. It will also let you know when it’s time to pick up a phone or walk to their office to clear things up. Simon does note, however, that it can be used as more of a guideline too, since some issues do require a little more back and forth. Still, this rule can help keep your inbox numbers down and help avoid any miscommunication in the future.

The ‘3-email rule’ is the key to solving the biggest problem with your inbox | Business Insider

Photo by SuperFantastic.

 

This article was written by Patrick Allan from Lifehacker and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.


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