Thoughts on workload

The week before last I was sick and therefore out of office for three days. When I checked my inbox after my leave I found it clogged with emails. More clogged than on a usual Monday, that is. Usually I stoicly answer email after email from top to bottom.

However, I found that my regular approach to getting atop of the pile of emails did not work. So I tried something new. I answered the most important emails first. People call it prioritising and it’s quite a shocking technique. That also didn’t work for me because how am I supposed to decide whether emails regarding my PhD project a more important than those pertaining to organising a conference in autumn? Students‘ emails are time-sensitive, too, because they want to start their essays.

In the end I settled for categorising by topic: Conference, course related emails, administrative stuff and general emails from colleagues.

It still took me all day (well all of my work day but that is a topic for another time) to answer everybody. The difference to my usual approach was that I didn’t feel as crushed as I normally do. Breaking up one big task (answer all the emails) into smaller tasks (answer one category of emails and then the next and so on) was utterly relieving.

Kommentar verfassen

Trage deine Daten unten ein oder klicke ein Icon um dich einzuloggen:

Du kommentierst mit Deinem Abmelden /  Ändern )


Du kommentierst mit Deinem Twitter-Konto. Abmelden /  Ändern )


Du kommentierst mit Deinem Facebook-Konto. Abmelden /  Ändern )

Verbinde mit %s