We recently presented a webinar on the Inbox Zero system of email management and had a great time freaking people out by asking them to delete all their project folders and close their email for hours at a time!
During the webinar (recording below) we got lots of great questions and we were not able to answer them all in the time we had so we've expanded on them a bit in this post.
As we presented this webinar, we got some great followup questions (and testimonials!) and so we're going to go a little deeper and answer them here.
Question: What about my "Sent Mail" folder? What do I do with sent mail?
Great question! I simply leave my Sent Mail folder as-is and ignore it for the most part. I can search that folder for stuff if I need do or I can CC myself on really important stuff and then just move the copy to my Archived folder. I also BCC mt contact management app so all correspondence is stored there, too.
Question: With the four folders, is it helpful to make use of the labels in Gmail to help in searching later?
I personally do not use labels. I've found that I can always find what I'm looking for using search filters so to me, labels would just add unneccesary complexity.
Question: when you work offline, how/when is mail sent?
Actually, mail is not sent when you work offline. It is batched up and then sent once you get back online. It's very satisfying to see/hear all that email being sent off in one big "whoosh!" when you get back online :)
Question: My Outlook email searches aren't very productive - alot of "too many messages in this search" - any tips?
Good question. When this happens I would recommend refining your searches with additional parameters. For example, if you are just searching on keyword try also adding a person's name or additional keywords to help refine it.
Question: How do you handle emails containing "resources", such as links, documents, studies, etc?
I make decisions based on what the attachment is and what I need to do with it. If it's just something temporary I will ignore it after I'm done and let it sit in Archived with the email. Sometimes I will download it and store it somewhere else. It just depends :)
Thanks for all the great questions! Feel free to keep the questions coming in the comments and I will be happy to help.