Thursday, March 22, 2007

Email and Slot Machines and Interruptions

Nathan Zeldes is right on the point. We need to start checking our emails 2 or 4 times a day. We don't want to get interrupted continuously. Indeed 3 years ago my former manager and colleague Bernard Aleva had introduced me to this concept of turning your email off for few hours and it definetly works.

"... she’d [Prof. Gloria Mark of UC Irvine] conjectured that email is like the slot machines in Vegas – one checks and rechecks the Inbox in the hope of finding a recently arrived “good one” and getting a “high” as a result. Gloria actually plans to do some research to confirm this intuitive observation.

Which goes to the question many people ask me when I come up with my more aggressive solutions to the problem: why not simply tell the user to only check email twice a day? If you explain the benefit to them, surely they’ll do it?..."

1 comment:

Nathan Zeldes said...

I recall there was a book titled "Never do email in the morning" - a title that captures the idea very nicely. A whole morning (or afternoon, if you're an afternoon person) to think and create in!...