How Can I Better Manage my Emails?

Question and Answer with Michelle Mccullough

Studies show that employees waste 17 hours a week on pointless work email. Take 17 and times it by all of your employees and that’s a hefty expense for businesses. Today’s blog will help us all better manage our email whether you work in an office or not.

Let’s start with some questions.
Question #1: Is that your actual email number? You have 62,000 unread emails?

Michelle: Yes I do have that many emails, and trust me I wish that wasn’t me. I have 7 different emails for 4 different companies that I manage every day. I’m not the person who gets my inbox to zero before being done for the day, but there are some things I do to help keep me sane, because there are many weeks I spend MORE than 17 hours a week in email.

Question #2: What would you say is the number one things professionals should do when managing their email?

Michelle: They should set a schedule for when they look at email. It shouldn’t be open all the time and notifications should be turned off. A study by Basex research shows that that if you’re in a project and you get interrupted, it takes 20 minutes to get your brain back to the point where you were. Productivity would increase if you check your emails 3 times a day. Morning when you get in, right before or right after lunch and right before you leave for the day.

Question #3: Many people get SO many emails, that only checking 3 times a day doesn’t seem like enough to sift through everything. What would your advice be for that?

Michelle: That’s why I recommend opting out of emails and there’s a great service called unroll.me that will tell you what lists you are signed up for and you can opt out on the screen with a click of a button. Cut back the junk and it makes the important stuff easier to respond to.

Question #4: How do you recommend people sift through email so they are focusing on the biggest priorities first?

Michelle: I recommend using folders. In most email clients you can set rules to send certain messages to certain folders so you can access them easily. You can also have your email client Star or bold emails from certain clients or your boss. If that’s not enough, I found out about a service called Sanebox that goes even further with rules and folders so that you can take back your email.

Celebrating 20 Years In Business

And other August Milestones

Before this month comes to a close, I want to acknowledge how awesome August is in the life of Michelle. I’m celebrating  FOUR major anniversaries.

FIVE years ago, my first book hit number 1 on the Amazon Bestseller list.

TEN years ago, a number of things happened.  I quit my corporate sales training job, built out my speaking business and expanded my marketing consultancy.  AND I started working with Kelly Anderson at Startup Princess (and got my first social media account). I ran my own agency and promotional products company not the side for years, but this year, with a baby in tow, I went on my own and built partnerships that changed my business and life forever.

FIFTEEN years ago, I married my husband. Good Stuff.

TWENTY years ago, I started my first business, Doodads Promotional Products.  It was 20 years ago this month when I started my entrepreneurial story.  This business isn’t my life’s mission, but it’s run “in the black” every year since it’s inception and it has funded EVERY other of my business ventures.  When I needed to produce and record my first speaking event, I sold more pens, mugs and t-shirts to pay for the production company.  When I needed a new website for a new venture, I sold some folders and CD cases to a long time client.

I don’t promote this business anymore, but I do try to keep existing customers happy and 100% of my business comes from repeat customers or referral each year.  I’m still grateful for this company that practically raised me.  I was 19 when I started it.  Doodads taught me about business to business marketing.  It taught me about tangible marketing and campaigns.  It taught me about systems and hiring help so that I could focus on revenue generating activities.  It taught me about competition and differentiation and that people weren’t just buying a pen, they were buying me.  It taught me about customer service and it taught me about myself. I have said many times, owning a business is the best personal development tool EVER.

So, in these final hours before it’s September, I acknowledge the Augusts of my life.  Without which I would be monumentally different.  Too bad I didn’t do anything incredibly awesome this year so that I could add to this list in five more years for the 5, 10, 15, 20, 25.  LOL

Here’s to August!

Motivation and Success Strategies Video Segment

Michelle is Interviewed on Park City TV

It was an honor to be invited to Park City TV. We discussed my book The Make It Happen Blueprint, talked about motivation and success strategies and even talked about the National Speakers Association Mountain West Chapter.

How Your Business Can Leverage Podcasts as Part Of Your Marketing

KSL Browser 5.0 TV segment

It was great to be back in the studio yesterday talking about podcasts!
If you want to see how I leverage podcasts for my business go to:
Make It Happen
The Living Room
Other great business podcasts:
Marketing Trust with Adam Buchanan
Cool Things Entrepreneurs Do with Thom Singer
Entrepreneur on Fire with John Lee Dumas
Here’s yesterday’s segment

Here’s a behind the scenes pick with Lori Pritchard and Andrew Whitenburg.

Are Questions Part of Your Content Marketing?

Questions are a great part of business. Questions help you tailor the sales conversation for better understanding of your client and conversions. Questions help lead the conversation in the right direction.
Questions are also a valuable part of your marketing.
Use your most frequently asked questions for blog posts, videos and content for your social media.
Use questions to “give your audience the microphone” and create a sense of community on your social media channels. (Interaction is also good for the algorithms.) It creates a great sense of connection between your business and your audience.
Use questions when you speak. Asking questions can increase audience interaction and connection to you as a speaker.
How do you use questions in your business?

10 Lessons Businesses and Peak Performers Can Learn From Greatest Showman (VIDEO)

KSL Browser 5.0 TV Segment

Today for my monthly segment on KSL Browser 5.0 I got to share 3 of my favorite business takeaways from the box office hit The Greatest Showman.
This segment was a lot of fun and there are some great tips and ideas here.
On the segment I share that I’ve made my list of almost 45 (and growing) takeaways. Today I’m going to share 7 more (in no particular order).
From the Video
1. Pivot & Innovate
2. “We Don’t Need A Building”
3. “Here Right In Front of You”
Bonus Takeaways:
4. From the scene in the bar with Jackman and Efron, “Comfort is the enemy of progress.” Juicy, right? Are you comfortable or are you growing? In what ways can you step away from fear and take action for greater success and performance?
5. Publicity is still the lifeblood of Business but today the PR for your business, brand or product exists beyond the newspaper and the limitation of others opinions. How can you get the media to talk about your business?  How can you use your own social media and online platforms to steer the conversation.
6. This isn’t discussed, but at the end, we see this great quote from PT Barnum. How do you or your business make others happy? How do you solve problems for your ideal customer.  “The noblest art is that of making others happy.”
7. Business or Success doesn’t fill any holes. Barnum, like many entrepreneurs (including myself at times), look to the lights and the glitter to fill something inside of us. I have learned, as Barnum’s character does, that success doesn’t fill holes of loneliness, lack, feeling like enough. And continuing to chase it can often make those holes bigger.
8. Don’t cut corners. I love Barnum’s commitment to quality costumes, good signs and marketing, etc. This is one of the biggest mistakes I see startups make, they cut corners to save a buck and do things halfway. As a result, their brand is only half developed and their bottom line, bottoms out. Sure, there are ways you can bootstrap your business, but don’t sacrifice quality.
9. “Dreaming with your eyes wide open” I love this line in the song “Come Alive”.  The double meaning here is awesome. “Dream while you’re awake,” my friend Clint Pulver says. And this line is directly in alignment with letting you dream in life and it just at night. Have your million dreams. But I also love Dream with your eyes wide open.
SEE the risks and evaluate.
SEE the future.
SEE what’s coming.
☝️ this is the way to expand your success.
10. Partner with RIGHT People. Barnum hand picked his performers for the right Show. He also picked a business partner that could fill a hole he needed. As you hire and grow, build your team with people who compliment your strengths by bringing their strengths to the table.
Stay tuned for more of my favorite takeaways, and share some of YOUR favorites!
Make It Happen!
Michelle