No, You Can’t Ignore Email. It’s Rude.

Excerpt from this article:

When researchers compiled a huge database of the digital habits of teams at Microsoft, they found that the clearest warning sign of an ineffective manager was being slow to answer emails. Responding in a timely manner shows that you are conscientious — organized, dependable, and hardworking. And that matters. In a comprehensive analysis of people in hundreds of occupations, conscientiousness was the single best personality predictor of job performance. (It turns out that people who are rude online tend to be rude offline, too.)

I’m not saying you have to answer every email. Your brain is not just sitting there waiting to be picked. If senders aren’t considerate enough to do their homework and ask a question you’re qualified to answer, you don’t owe them anything back.

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We’re Not Nearly as Busy as We Pretend to Be, According to a New Study

Excerpt from this article, which has a link to the study (itself a great read!):

The Havas study says pretending to be busy has become a vital workplace survival skill thanks to our modern society’s tacit celebration of being overloaded.

“Our issue with time seems to be not so much that we have too little of it, but that we now equate being busy with leading a life of significance,” the report notes. “And we don’t want to be relegated to the sidelines. In an essay in The New York Times, writer Tim Kreider observed, ‘Busyness serves as a kind of existential reassurance, a hedge against emptiness; obviously your life cannot possibly be silly or trivial or meaningless if you are so busy, completely booked, in demand every hour of the day.'”

“It’s a reflection,” Maleeny said. “There’s been a lot of talk of the hyper-connected world, and that’s only going to get more connected as our cars get smarter, as we enter the world of flying cars and talking toasters, and I think that as that emerges, it’s going to be harder to disconnect.”

How everyone will come to grips with the realities of living with more strings (or WiFi signals) attached is still forming. Maleeny said millennials at the “crest of the wave” of connectivity have brought along older generations. However, Maleeny added, unplugged holidays and daily meditation time through yoga could become more common.

“You’re starting to see some pushback,” he said. “The joy of missing out, or JOMO, if you like. But the social currency [of busyness] is still around.”