Inbox Zero Secret Weapon #2: Streak for Gmail
Your email inbox.
Most likely your relationship with it falls into one of two categories: when you think about your email inbox, your thoughts are either neutral, or evil ones.
Processing email and Google searching are 2 Life skills that I think should be taught in schools from an early age. But they aren’t.
Both my kids got email accounts issued by their school while in elementary grades. Yet none of the kids received any formal training on how to use email: the netiquette of it, productivity wise, etc.
Millions and millions of people today still have no clue what inbox zero is. And when you mention the concept to someone with an overflowing email inbox, they laugh it off as if that would be the Holy Grail. Indiana Jones. Stuff that dreams are made of.
But learning inbox zero tech Meeks is one of the most impactful things you can do for your daily routine and life. Especially since email has gone mobile with smart phones, and now smart devices like the Apple Watch – and our culture to man’s pretty much instant, real time responsiveness.
One of the most valued tools for inbox zero that I use is called STREAK for Gmail. The big gorilla in the market is boomerang for Gmail. Right Inbox is another.
They all work in a similar fashion. Simply install their browser plug-ins and your Gmail or Google apps email get instance superpowers. You’ll see new buttons and functions that are added to your inbox and new message compose pages.
So what can Streak for Gmail do? Here is a couple of things to whet your appetite.
5 things you need for inbox zero from Streak
- Future mail: Schedule for emails to be sent at a future date and time. This is powerful because everyone else is in boxes are overflowing and things get lost. It is best to let the recipients get the email from you when it is most appropriate.
- Snooze fest: Put away specific emails and bring them back to the top of your inbox when you’re ready. Your inbox should not be your filing cabinet. This allows you to essentially put emails away out of you until you really need to be reminded of it or work on it. For example, I schedule email of my airline flight, hotel or car rental confirmations to come back to my inbox on the morning of the day of travel. There’s no sense of keeping it around until I need it when I actually travel. This is great for any events specific email of course.
- Email open check. Sometimes it would be helpful to know if the recipient actually received and opened your email yet. The manner in which you follow up can be influenced by knowing if they have opened up your email five times and have done nothing on it, or if they have never opened it yet at all.
- No response monitoring. This is a fantastic feature. You can send an email, and have it returned to the top of your inbox ONLY if there is no more activity, reply, etc. by a certain date and time that you indicate. If anyone replies to your email, the return request is automatically canceled. No need to follow up since there is activity on the conversation.
- Rubberstamp snippets: you can save email templates of messages that you tend to use over and over again. Great part is this allows you to save subject lines as well. Stop wasting time on trying to reinvent the wheel one email at a time. Focus on activities that will give the most impact and productivity.
Streak for Gmail is a life changer. Try it out — the free version has been enough for me. And it should be good enough for you unless you are some crazy high-volume emailer.