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Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Use Email Without Wasting Time or Getting Into Email Tag

Perhaps you read my previous post on email: Outlook Folder Structure For The Clinically Organised?

If not this post's an update on using junk mail checking software and a great book on using email more effectively. And remember even though I speak from an Outlook perspective the principles apply to other email clients too.

Spam or Junk Checkers

There are a lot of programs around that remove spam or junk mail from email folders. Outlook itself offers tools to do it and up to Outlook 2002 it's pretty limited.

Filling the gap the tools I've used are:

  • SpamBayes
  • ZoneAlarm

SpamBayes was an effective spam remover but didn't eliminate all of the spam emails and let through some even after extensive training (showing it emails I didn't want to get). However, it did the job more effectively than the email rules I'd set-up for Outlook so I continued to use it.

Then ZoneAlarm (the makers of my personal Firewall) combined their firewall with their own spam filter software. And as soon as I turned it on the spam dropped nicely and I now have very little coming through. The slight downside I've noticed with ZoneAlarm is that there are a few emails routed to the spam folders even though they're actually legitimate. Just something I keep an eye on and a lot less trouble than checking all the spam! 

Essential Guide To Email Use

How many of us have ever made an email faux-pas or received one from someone?

A useful book called Send: The Essential Guide to Email for Office and Home aims to help you produce better emails that get understood more quickly and defuse situations that email can create.

It's currently shooting up the best seller lists

The only issue I have with this book is that it recommends smileys, icons you can add to emails to represent your mood/attitude. In my own experience I found that smileys in a business situation can come over quite badly and even patronisingly.

If you check out the Amazon page for the book you can see what silly things one of the main people involved with the disaster management for Hurricane Katrina said and even how the authors themselves got into an email spiral whilst communicating with their book editor.

Do we need a book on how to best use email? See for yourself and check the reviews for Send: The Essential Guide to Email for Office and Home at Amazon site.

The Amazon advert for the book is shown below:


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