Happy Birthday GMAIL – Magic or Mayhem?

Do you look at your email as magic or mayhem?

April 1st was the birth of gmail. Now that gmail is past it’s 10th year, many think it’s time to pull the plug on email as a tool. Though Google has done more than any company to make email usable (and searchable, manageable)  some think email is old school and needs destroying.

It’s a common mistake. Thinking that the tool is the problem. I’m not saying that it isn’t true that we all have inboxes that are giving us stress. I’m challenging where we are placing the blame.

Whether you use email, text messages, social media, or a letter through the post, the problem isn’t the tool – it’s you. Yes, you. These things created by Google, Microsoft, and others are only tools. What you choose to use them for will determine whether it’s Magic or Mayhem.

Do you choose to copy everyone on your team on every email even when they don’t need to know? – Mayhem.

Do you respond back to a colleague with a solution to a problem? – Magic

Do you send a nasty email to someone? – Mayhem.

Do you send praise to a colleague across the globe so she can save that email and look at later when she is feeling down? – Magic

There are benefits and pitfalls for all forms of communication. Each form has a best use – depending upon the message, the audience, and the context.

Take responsibility for your communication & productivity decisions instead of blaming the tool.