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Let people know when you’ll respond

Posted by Ilise Benun on

I’ve been working with clients a lot lately on time management issues — specifically, how to make sure they don’t waste the day answering email and not get to the priorities: work and marketing activities (IMHO).

One solution we have come up with is to schedule specific times of the day to "do email," but that only works if you stick to the schedule, which is often challenging for people who have "trouble" with structure and discipline (two essentials for running a successful business, BTW).

One way to help you stick to it is to tell other people what you’re doing, so you have witnesses and accountability.

That’s what Garlin Gilchrist II has done.

Here’s the autoresponder message sent to everyone who sends him an email message:

Subject line: Garlin will respond at 11 AM PDT.
Hello, and thanks for contacting me.

I check and respond to email daily at 1100 AM Pacific. If your message is an FYI or does not ask a question, please do not expect a response. If it contains a specific question or request, I will respond at 1100 AM Pacific the next day.

If you truly have an urgent need or request that can’t wait until 11 AM the following day, call me at (###) 555-1212.

Garlin Gilchrist II
The SuperSpade: Black Thought at the Highest Level.

Activist Nerd:

Here’s a link to his blog post on where this idea came from and how it’s working for him.

What would happen if you tried this technique?

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