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Seth Godin blogged last week about a technique that he claims he’s been using for years to make a little bit easier for himself to respond to all of his e-mail.
The idea is that you treat e-mail much like an SMS twitter message. You limit the length of the response you’re going to make beforehand, so that it is easier to finish writing. Since it’s a pain in the neck to count letters, or even words, instead you count sentences. Limiting responses to two sentences, three, four, or five – and no longer – seems like it could make it much easier to manage email.
Given the amount of complexity and richness possible in email (see our Enron email and Twitter analysis), it seems like using this technique on every email is really limiting. On the other hand, maybe it’s a good framework to start with for emails that aren’t deeply technical in nature. Or maybe Seth uses something besides email when he needs to convey complex information.
Do you know anyone who has had success with this?