Skyrocket Productivity and Impress Others
By: Barron Boon
Truth be told, less than half of us are familiar with all the shortcuts and additional features of say, our email. Searching for more functions than we’re already experts of may take up too much time. However, what if picking up a few more tricks could prevent you from disastrous email mistakes and perhaps even impress your colleagues?
- Recall Emails
That moment when you realise that you addressed the email to the wrong individual. Or even worse, you used a template and carelessly forgot to replace a person’s or brand name. Uh oh.
While these are common mistakes that can be easily forgiven by colleagues or even bosses, it’s no laughing matter when it’s an official email meant for one of your biggest clients.
Thankfully, there’s a one-click wonder that will safegaurd you from blunders like these forever!
[Gmail] In order to enable this ‘Undo’ feature in Gmail, go to Settings to Enable it. Set the desired time to 30 seconds to be on the safe side.
Note: There’s nothing much you can do once the time limit elapses.
[Microsoft Outlook] The Recall This Message function will only work if your recipient is also using Microsoft Outlook.
Go to your Sent folder, select the email you wish to recall. Go to Actions and select Recall This Message. You may even choose to replace this message or delete it completely.
If all else fails, you could resort to your primal roots and literally stop the email from being sent out – unplug your internet connection or disconnect from your wifi. Go to your outbox and then delete your messages. A general rule of thumb is that any mails seen in your Outbox, haven’t been sent to the other party yet.
The most effective way to prevent such panic attacks however, is to re-read your emails before clicking Send.
- Search Like a Pro
If you’re hoping to search for something in your ocean of emails, take advantage of codes. Try “has:Sean” when sourcing for all emails sent from James for example.
[Gmail] Key in “has:attachment” under the search bar in your Gmail if you’re trying to locate any emails with attachments. You can also type “has:Sean” to look for emails from Sean.
[Microsoft Outlook] Clt+E will take you to an instant search bar. For HTML versions (in your browser), key in “has:attachment” in the search bar and it will show all emails with attachments.
In order to make your life easy, always develop the habit of saving your emails in the proper folders and labels to sort your emails. This way, you’ll spend less time going through bouts of emails.
[Gmail] It’s called Labels instead of Folders in Gmail. If there’s an email that contains “Happy Mother’s Day” and you have created a label named “Happy Mother’s Day”, Gmail might label it automatically for you.
Labels also act like folders where you can drag and drop emails from your inbox.
[Microsoft Outlook] Create similar folders to drag and drop emails, to organize your flooded inbox.
- Become a Shortcut Guru
With these shortcuts at the tip of your fingers, you won’t even be needing a mouse or trackpad!
Gmail users, heard to Setting and Turn On Keyboard Shortcuts and save.
To draft a new email:
- [Gmail] press ‘C’
- [Microsoft Outlook] Ctr + Shift + M
To reply an email:
- [Gmail] Press R
- [Microsoft Outlook] Alt + R to reply
To forward an email:
- [Gmail] Press F
- [Microsoft Outlook] Alr + W
To send an email:
- [Gmail] After composing message, press tab + enter
- [Microsoft Outlook] Alt + S
There are many other shortcuts that impress but the above mentioned are a good enough start to get your colleagues, bosses or clients to want to learn a tip or two from you!
- Track Your Emails
Once you’ve dispatched your emails, you’re sometimes curious as to who has read them or not. With programs equipped with tracking capabilities, you can monitor behaviours such as open and click rates. This is a good method to check interest levels of potential sales leads or even sift out the good from the bad when intended recipients claim that they haven’t open your email yet!
Hubspot, Followup.cc and mailchimp are just some of the many email tracking programs out there.
- Better Manage Your Tasks
Lighten your memory burden by using tools to keep track of your tasks. The good news is that most of these tools are free! Other than that, these user-friendly platforms are also effective in storing other useful information like notes helpful weblinks, and weekend shopping lists, that you may want to use in the future.
Some of the top favourites are Google Keep, Trello, HabitRPG and Wunderlist. Since most of these programs have mobile versions, you have the liberty of managing your tasks on the go.
We hope some of these corporate hacks can come in handy in your workplace. A little does go a long way, especially with tools that can skyrocket your productivity!