Your email account gives you access to the people in your life. You must be able to communicate in this way in order to maximize your effectiveness in the shortest amount of time. That’s why I was shocked to see so many people struggling with this during a three day marketing conference I attended and spoke at recently.
Each day there were people trying to find messages from friends and business contacts, and saying they couldn’t remember which email they had used to sign up for a particular program or event. They would log in and out of several email services, sometimes giving up before locating what they were looking for. I could not believe what I was seeing.
I am not an Outlook person. The idea of my email being connected to my computer, instead of being available from anywhere in the world, never appealed to me. Instead, I kept the process simple all of these years, and I believe it has paid off very well. I now receive hundreds of emails each day, and it is very easy for me to read and respond to the ones that need my attention, and to file or delete the ones that do not.
I have a main email that is connected to my domain name. This makes me appear serious and professional to my clients and other business connections online. This email forwards to my Yahoo account, which I check about every 6 hours. This makes it easy to stay connected with my coaching students, as well as my friends who choose to communicate with me through email instead of by phone. I also have a Gmail account for some high level coaching programs I am a part of. I check that one once each day. I have another Yahoo account where I sign up to be on everyone’s list. I typically check that one every other day.
My recommendation is to have no more than three accounts. Also, do not use services that censor and filter what you will receive. I do not like a company that chooses what I will see; that’s what parents do when we are growing up. We are in business and will decide that for ourselves.
Make it clear to your clients what your email policy is on a regular basis. You will find that people who are demanding and want you to reply back right away, even on a Sunday, are not the ones you want to spend your precious time with. Instead, decide what works best for you and then let others know what you have decided. It’s all about lifestyle choice, and email is a part of it.