Things have changed. We have to look at Outlook differently. Otherwise we will continue to misuse it. Spend just five minutes to understand the new role of Outlook:
- Use Clutter to clear out less relevant mails
- Identify important mails
- Avoid excessive mail attachments by using links
- Manage your work better with Task Folder
- Use Skype for Business and Skype FB for faster, more secured teamwork
- Use Yammer to faciliate discussion, ideas and progress
- Recap: Which one to use when
Read related articles here.
Welcome back after a long holiday. I am sure an overflowing mailbox is waiting for you. Here are some simple but useful ways to get a grip on it and handle it efficiently.
- Mails received earlier are waiting longer. Therefore, try to start from the day after you went on leave. If you went on leave from Christmas, go to the Search box and type received>25 dec 2015
- Now sort the results in descending order of time and check for important mails.
- Look for mails which are addressed ONLY TO YOU. This is easily done by creating a special rule.
- Think of important customers, boss, or other high priority senders. Create a rule which highlights mails from them using a color category. Group by that category and handle these mails first.
- One approach is to look at unread mails only. But nowadays, we often see the mails first on a mobile phone. This marks the mail as read. In spite of that action may still be pending. Therefore Unread mails is an unreliable indicator of pending work. To avoid this confusion in the future, use the message flag when you read a mail on mobile but intend to act upon it later.
- Convert actionable mails to Tasks and put a deadline. DO NOT mark them with the follow up flag. Drag the mail using the right mouse button and drop it on to the Task icon. Choose the Move with Attachments option.
- Filter on Importance flag. Mind you, this flag is usually set by the sender. However, if it is important to the sender, there is a good chance that it is important to you as well. Type Importance: High in the Search box.
- Confidential mails are generally more important. Type Sensitivity: Confidential in the Search box to find such mails. There is no easy way to filter IRM protected mails. These mails are visually identifiable with this type of icon
If you use an Office 365 mailbox, use Clutter to automatically segregate less important mails. That’s it for now. Happy New Year.
In an earlier article, I discussed the benefits of a new Outlook feature called Clutter. Here is an update of how nicely the feature works…
Continue reading Inbox Clutter Update
All of us have faced this issue. Too many mailboxes and / or PST files. Too many folders to manage. We need them so we keep them. No choice. But do we really use all these folders frequently – obviously not. Would it not be nice to have the frequently used folders from across all the mailboxes easily accessible? Those are called Favorites.
How to add a particular folder to Favorites? Very simple. Just right click on the folder and choose Show in Favorites (or just drag it into the Favorites area at the top). That is all there is to it.
But it is smarter than you think. What if you add three Inbox folders from various mailboxes? All will look same. NO. Not right.
It actually will add the mailbox to the Inbox name so that you can differentiate. Remember that only mail folders have Favorites option (not calendar, contacts or tasks).
Length of mail trails is proportional to your seniority (usually)! People just keep discussing, debating, arguing – with no end in sight. Never ending story. Sometimes, mail is NOT the best option to come to a consensus or resolve an issue. We need everyone to be present at the same time and focus on the problem at hand. Yes I know – all these people are in different continents or castles (!) – no problem. There is an elegant solution available …
Continue reading Tired of long mail trails? Why not just chat and finish it off?
Yes it does. Provided you use Outlook 2010 and Exchange 2010 or above. Not one or two, it helps you prevent many more mistakes. This feature is so smart, you don’t have to do anything to activate it. It just understands! You just have to notice and see what it is telling you and take corrective action. This amazingly talented feature is called Mail Tips …
Continue reading How does Outlook help prevent silly mistakes?
Outlook Online recently added a very useful new feature called Clutter. It helps you focus on important mails.
Activate it and use it. Here are the guidelines for using this brilliant Outlook Clutter.
Estimated reading time 8 min
Continue reading Outlook: Reduce Inbox Clutter using Artificial Intelligence