Man checking his messages in Outlook on a tablet

You don’t need to be hyperconnected to be effective.

@Work | Tools

Get the most from your Outlook

Three good habits to adopt today

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Almost everyone knows how to insert a signature or set up an automatic reply. But, while Outlook helps us get a lot done, it’s also easy to quickly lose control of all the emails we receive daily. Here are three good habits to adopt today.

  1. Use filters to automatically sort your messages into specific folders. Your inbox should only contain important emails, or at least those requiring your immediate attention, not a bunch of newsletters you never look at or social media notifications. To apply a filter, open an email from the sender in question. On the toolbar, click Rules, select Always Move Messages From: [sender], then select a folder (you can create as many as you need to help you keep track of all your emails).
  2. If you can’t close Outlook while you work, turn off the notifications. By default, whenever a new email arrives, Outlook plays a sound, shows an envelope in the taskbar and displays a Desktop Alert. It’s a lot, right? You can change this setting by clicking the File tab, then selecting Options, Mail, and unchecking the boxes of the notifications that you want to disable under Message arrival. You can do the same on your mobile phone; you don’t need to be hyperconnected to be effective.
  3. Don’t send late-night emails. Why send a message at 11:12 p.m.? Nothing is that urgent. Some countries have already imposed a curfew to discourage companies from sending emails after hours (a.k.a. right to disconnect). Canada isn’t one of them, but nothing is preventing you from postponing delivery on an email you write after business hours to the next morning (as early as you want!) by selecting Do not deliver before in the Options menu. Your email will be better received.