No seriously, why are you still checking your own email? (Steps to delegate your inbox - this week!)
For some, email management might not be a major pain point - maybe it only takes a few minutes each day to organize and respond to emails, but for others (and you know who I’m talking to) it’s overwhelming and takes them out of the cockpit and into the aisles serving the coffee. If you’re spending more than a couple hours managing your email each week, it might be time to delegate your inbox.
Use this as loose guidelines, but go at your own pace and use the system that works best for you.
This will just give you an idea for how easy it can be.
So here are some simple steps to delegate your inbox:
1. Create email reply guidelines.
Here are some examples:
When responding to emails, our goal is to sound like a golden retriever: helpful, excited, and really friendly.
Try to make responses shorter than 4 sentences and point customers to a resource, if possible.
2. Create inbox management protocol:
Here are some examples:
Emails must be checked daily by 9 AM MST and at 2 PM MST.
The goal is inbox 0 by 5PM MST. Organize all emails into the correct folders, respond to all inquiries you can, and send me all emails you can’t respond to and “snooze” them by 5 PM MST each day.
For any questions we receive more than once, immediately add the question and response to our FAQ document for easy reference.
For all questions you cannot answer, please send them to me on (Project management software of your choice) and tag me.
If I do not respond within 24 hours, please follow up with me.
3. Share your login with your VA or create an email address for email forwarding. (Ps. if you need to hire a VA, here's a refresher for how).
4. Have your VA create an internal FAQ document with any repeatedly asked questions or templates you want them to use.
5. Have your VA start drafting replies, then approve or revise their responses before the emails are sent out. This is the perfect time to see if they’re the right person for the job.
6. When they are ready, have your VA start answering emails and sending you the questions they are unable to answer in whatever project management software you’re using.
7. Check in frequently at first. For the first few weeks (or months), randomly monitor the inbox to ensure the responses are appropriate, emails aren’t getting missed, and protocol is being followed. If there are any discrepancies, course correct.
8. Let go and grow. You’re now ready to let go of micromanaging your inbox. Decide how you’re going to spend that extra time on something that maximizes your business (or feeds your soul).
This is a general, simple outline of how a VA could take over an inbox, if you want my help in creating your inbox management workflow, book a free systems coaching call with me.
Don’t get stuck serving the coffee to your customers when you need to be flying the plane.
Try it out and let me know how it goes.
Here's to you getting Time Rich, Summer