Email is a little like running water — it’s easy to forget to appreciate. To revive our appreciation of the gift of email, all we have to do is review its benefits. Email…
— Is free for individuals and cheap for businesses.
— Gives companies and individuals free or low-cost opportunities to market products and services.
— Facilitates instantaneous communication.
Of these benefits, instantaneous communication may be the most profound. As Laurel Storm wrote in Why Is Email Important in Business Communication?, “Using email streamlines both internal and external communication, making it faster and easier to transmit and disseminate important information and allowing for almost realtime status updates. In turn, the continuous flow of relevant information makes employees and executives alike more efficient and productive, enabling quick responses to any issue that may arise.”
Our lives would not be the same without email. Accountants, among other professionals, would not be able to do their jobs without it. In fact, about one-third of an employed person’s time at work is spent interacting with email.
28% of Your Time at Work Is Spent Emailing
Much workplace communication takes place through email, and why not? Email is convenient and quick. The McKinsey Global Institute reported, “We spend 28 percent of our workweeks reading, writing or responding to email.” (This was noted in the article How Much Time You Really Spend Emailing at Work?) The Atlantic’s Jordan Weissman commented that this statistic indicates we spend 650 hours a year interacting with email. Some professionals, such as accountants, spend more time than this communicating via email.
As an accountant, how much time do you spend writing, reading, and responding to email?
Accountants, You Can Become Better Email Communicators in 3 Steps
The vast majority of us will communicate through email every day for the rest of our lives. Since this is the case, why not become the best emailers we can be? Here are 3 steps to help anyone, specifically accountants, become better email communicators:
- Have boundaries with email – Contrary to popular belief, it’s not necessarily rude to wait hours to respond to an email. When at work, it’s usually best to respond promptly to emails. But when you get home, you must have time to unplug somewhat from technology, even if just for a few hours. Remember, some emails can wait.
- Utilize Gmail’s features and extensions – Are you using Gmail’s features and extensions to your advantage? If not, your life is more complicated than it needs to be. Here are a few features you should check out: canned responses (to save you time typing identical responses day after day); Boomerang (for scheduling emails and receiving follow-up reminders); and labels and stars (for organizing your emails).
- Know how to sign off on emails – It’s beneficial to know how to sign off on an email. The article 89 Ways to Sign Off On an Email includes a sea of helpful tips for accountants (or any type of professional) concerning email sign-off etiquette.
For an accountant, being a good emailer is a must. Learning how to implement boundaries with email, utilize Gmail’s features and extensions, and properly sign off on emails are excellent ways to become the email communicators we all have the potential to be.