In business, the busiest people I know aren’t necessarily the most effective. Doing for the sake of doing is a good way to get in the habit of execution. The habit of execution is more than getting things done, it is the art of doing the right things, at the right time, and for the right people.

Some of the most successful people I know who have made names for themselves in business have an uncanny ability to answer emails almost immediately. They are also really good at getting to the point. Inc’s recent article on email etiquette when dealing with busy people is relevant to anyone who wants to be effective as a person. I’ve added my commentary.

  1. Keep it short and to the point. I agree. I don’t have time to read a novel. I do that using audible.com
  2. State your most important ask up front. Easier to decide what to do when I know what the message is about. 
  3. If there are multiple parts to the email, try to break it up into sections. Also, please use clear headings if its complicated.
  4. Write to one person at a time. I agree, but I cheat here sometimes. 
  5. Make your subject line matter. There are a few folks I know who don’t put a subject in their email. 
  6. Time of day matters. I personally don’t look at my email until later in the day, because I email to work, not work to email. 
  7. Rinse and repeat. Practice makes perfect. 

These tips were gathered from Inc – 7 Tips for Emailing Extraordinarily Busy People, but there are numerous resources that can help you become a better email communicator. I’ll be curating them here for your pleasure as they come around. Communicating better is the best way to ensure that you don’t waste people’s time, especially who’s time is more important than yours.