Research-based approaches to email & time management

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30 Οκτ 2013 (πριν από 3 χρόνια και 7 μήνες)

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Research
-
based approaches
to email & time management

Dr. Brad Mehlenbacher

Leadership, Policy &

Adult & Higher Education

NC State University

brad_m@unity.ncsu.edu

www4.ncsu.edu/~brad_m


Higher
education culture & rapid change

Asaolu
, O. S. (2006). On the emergence of new computer technologies. Educational Technology and Society, 9(1), 335

343.

Hanna
, D. E. (2003). Organizational models in higher education, past and future. In M. G. Moore & W. G. Anderson (Eds.),
Handbook of Distance Education

(pp. 67
-
78). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.

Adopted from:

Work
is information
-
intensive, customized,
rapid, flexible,
horizontal, integrated,
service oriented,
distributed, continuous,
consultative (
Asaolu
,
2005,
p
. 337)



Access

to education
from any location, at
any time, for any age,
and in many ways is
critical for individual
and collective well
-
being” (Hanna, 2003,
p
.
68
)

Managing multiple
work
-
learning worlds

Gleick
, J. (1999).
Faster: The acceleration of just about everything
. NY, NY: Pantheon Books
.

Ong
, W. J. (1982).
Orality

and literacy: The
technologizing

of the word
. NY, NY: Methuen, pp. 82
-
83.

Adopted from:

Phase Transition:
“The
controlling factor here is not
heat or energy but pure
connectivity



“Night now, Daddy, you go

puter

email” (Eleanor, 2 years
old)


“But where’s
my

email?!”
(Frances, 4 years old)

Work Learning

Leisure
Learning

Higher
Learning


“Alienation from a natural milieu can be good for us and indeed is in
many ways essential for full human life. To live and to understand
fully,
we need not only proximity but also distance
….
Technologies are artificial, but


paradox again


artificiality is
natural to human beings. Technology, properly interiorized, does not
degrade human life but on the contrary enhances it”

E
-
mail is
pervasive & ubiquitous


Email
“has evolved beyond a
passive communication system”
(MacKay, 1989,
p
. 395
)


Email “is woven into the general
system of coordinated activity”
(Wattenberg, 2005,
p
. 144)


74%
of American adults use
Internet; 69% online daily


91% of them use e
-
mail


71% of workers regard email as
“essential” for their everyday work
(Whittaker,
2005,
p
. 49).

MacKay, W. E. (1989). Diversity in the use of electronic mail: A preliminary inquiry.
ACM Transactions on Office Information
Systems, 6

(4), 380
-
397.

PEW
Internet & American Project. (
2009)
.
Online Activities

and
Internet: The mainstreaming of online life
. Available online:
http://
www.pewinternet.org

Wattenberg, M.,
Rohall
, S. L.,
Gruen
, D., & Kerr, B. (2005). Email research: Targeting the enterprise.
Human
-
Computer
Interaction, 20

(1/2), 139
-
162.


Whittaker, S. (2005). Supporting collaborative task management in email.
Human
-
Computer Interaction, 20

(1/2), 49
-
88.


Adopted from:


Knowledge workers average
checking email 50 times/day,
instant messaging 77 times, and
visited over 40 websites


Email volume has doubled over
last 5 years, to 40B person
-
to
-
person emails everyday (IBM
Podcast
, 2008)

Balancing proximity & distance


Contemporary
conditions
include
fragmentation, diminished attention,
interruptability
, multitasking, dual processing,
polychronicity
, information overload, pseudo
-
attention deficit disorder (
Lohr
, 2007)



Employees are said to spend about 50 to 90
minutes a day managing email” (Van
Waes
,
2003,
p
. 279)
.


How
do I
balance

work with personal time,
research, instruction, and extension,
access
with protected time, community interests with
individual priorities, service goals with self?

Brown, J. S., &
Duguid
, P. (2000).
The social life of information
. Boston, MA: Harvard Business School P
.

Lohr
, S. (2007). Is information overload a $650 billion drag on the economy?
New York Times, December 20
. Available online:
http://bits.blogs.nytimes.com/2007/12/20/is
-
information
-
overload
-
a
-
650
-
billion
-
drag
-
on
-
the
-
economy/?scp=1andsq=
information+overload

Van
Waes
, L. (2003). Use and misuse of email.
Document Design, 4

(3), 279
-
280.

Adopted from:

Characterizing your e
-
mail use


How many

messages
did
you
send today?


How many messages did you
receive today?


Is this a typical day?


How many mail folders do you
have?


How many messages are in
your inbox
?


Is this typical?


How many distribution lists do
you subscribe to?


How often do you read your
email?


Do you read all of your email?

MacKay, W. E. (1989). Diversity in the use of electronic mail: A preliminary inquiry.
ACM Transactions on Office Information
Systems, 6

(4), 380
-
397
.

Whittaker, S. (2005). Supporting collaborative task management in email.
Human
-
Computer Interaction, 20

(1/2), 49
-
88.

Adopted from:


What
percentage of
messages do you wish
you had never seen?
(MacKay, 1989,
p
. 396
)


Do you keep reminders?


Do you keep an
electronic or hardcopy
calendar?


Do you keep a separate
to
-
do
list(s
)?


Can you identify
messages related to
most important work
tasks? (Whittaker, 2005).

Making email your refrigerator


Require electricity, textual
literacy, computer knowledge


Allow strangers and spammers to
post messages


Invite hasty responses, accidental
postings, flames


Make co
-
authoring a note difficult


Organize themselves
chronologically


Hide the contents of new notes


Isolate communication exchange
and incidental viewing


Last forever and get re
-
circulated
out of context.


PEW Internet & American Project. (2005).
Online Activities

and
Internet: The mainstreaming of online life
. Available online:
http://
www.pewinternet.org

Adopted from:

My

refrigerator
notes
don’t:

Anticipating the
email future

Bellotti
, V.,
Ducheneaut
, N., Howard, M., Smith, I., &
Grinter
, R. E. (2005). Quality versus quantity: Email
-
centric task
management and its relation with overload.
Human
-
Computer Interaction, 20

(1/2), 89
-
138
.

Human
-
Computer Interaction Lab, University of Maryland. Available online:
http://www.cs.umd.edu/hcil/pubs/screenshots/Role
-
manager.shtml

Gwizdka
, J. (2002). Reinventing the inbox


Supporting
the management of pending tasks in e
-
mail.
Proceedings of CHI 2002 Conference
, Minneapolis, MN, 550
-
551
.

Adopted from:

Sample analysis of e
-
mail threads (p. 111):

Visualization role
-
manager
interface (HCIL):

Task view inbox as
calendar (p. 551):

Understanding the limitations of email

Blandford
, A. E., & Green, T. R. G. (2001). Group and individual time management tools: What you get is not what you need.
Personal and Ubiquitous Computing, 5

(4), 213
-
230
.

Ducheneaut
, N., & Watts, L. A. (2005). In search of coherence: A review of email research.
Human
-
Computer Interaction, 20

(1/2), 11
-
48.

Adopted from:


Reminders of
appointments and to
-
dos


Other time
-
based
information


Group
uses


A record of past
activities


Portability


Ready
accessibility


Visual salience in the work
setting


Fluidity of visual
structure


Local versus global view


Scarring



Problems:


Prioritizing intentions


Expressiveness of
technologies


Explicit and implicit
information


Event
series


Typographic


Not face
-
to
-
face
communication





“E
-
mail is an evolving

sociotechnical

phenomenon

(
Ducheneaut

& Watts,

2005,
p
. 12)

Working with email strategically


Identify essential information


Produce accurate, brief, clear
messages


Consider alternative media


Keep
relevant content at
hand


Preserve the ongoing work
-
state
of incomplete
activities


Save content that might be
needed again in the
future


Find things in the overwhelming
and generally growing mass of
content


Prioritize the “must
-
do’s
” against
the “would
-
be
-
nice
-
to
-
do’s”


Get rid of irrelevant content
(
Bellotti
, et al. (2005,
p
. 101).

Bellotti
, V.,
Ducheneaut
, N., Howard, M., Smith, I., &
Grinter
, R. E. (2005). Quality versus quantity: Email
-
centric task
management and its relation with overload.
Human
-
Computer Interaction, 20

(1/2), 89
-
138
.

Adopted from:


Minimize copying (consider
audience,

purpose, goals)


Organize according

to
priorities: from direct report,
messages
to you, to you and
others, and copied to you


Streamline workflow.

Employing simple email tactics


Regularly scanning the inbox; often scrolling up and
down


Turning off ping; avoiding dependence on constant email updates


Learning keystroke shortcuts and exploring your email application


Sorting,

by sender, flags, other prioritizing systems,
to find items
more easily than in the default time
-
and
-
date
-
based
view


Deleting items to clean
-
out irrelevant, distracting content in the
inbox


Storing currently relevant items in task
application


Marking email messages as
unread (or critical or important, etc.)


Storing items in appropriately labeled email folders and subfolders to
be worked on together in the
future


Archiving messages in email folders for
reference


Inspecting or searching in folders in email and

using other technical
or nontechnical methods of keeping work prioritized


Making a calendar event to remind oneself to do something
(
Bellotti
,
et al., 2005,
p
. 102).

Bellotti
, V.,
Ducheneaut
, N., Howard, M., Smith, I., &
Grinter
, R. E. (2005). Quality versus quantity: Email
-
centric task
management and its relation with overload.
Human
-
Computer Interaction, 20

(1/2), 89
-
138
.

Adopted from:

Remembering
netoric
, not netiquette

Albion.com
, & Ross, S. T. (2004).
Netiquette
. Available online:
http://www.albion.com/netiquette/book/index.html

Lanham, R. A. (2002). The audit of
virtuality
: Universities in the attention economy. In S.
Brint

(Ed.),
The future of the city of
intellect: The changing American university

(pp. 159
-
180). Stanford, CA: Stanford UP.

Adopted from:


Remember the
human, that is, your
audience, their time constraints, work
patterns, communication styles,
organizational habits


Set high
-
level priorities for your work
and personal life


Adhere to the same standards of
behavior online that you follow in real life


Know where you are in
cyberspace and
for how long and what purposes


Respect other people’s time and
bandwidth


Make yourself look good online


Share expert knowledge


Help keep flame wars under
control
(reflect)


Respect other people’s privacy


Don’t abuse your power


Be forgiving of other people’s mistakes


“The digital medium is not a
neutral conduit any more
than print was…. The
rhetoric of digital
expression

is already in
use across academic life, at
least in embryo, and its
implications are clear
enough and profound” (pp.
175
-
176)

Internalizing
netoric

Felder, R. M. (2006). A whole new mind for a flat world. Chemical Engineering Education, 40(2), 96

97.

Putnam
, R. D. (2000).
Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Community
. New York: Simon and
Schuster.

Adopted from:


Knowledge work
is
creative, entrepreneurial,
holistic, multidisciplinary,
global, interpersonal,
relational, self
-
directed, and
flexible (Felder, 2006,
p
. 96)


“The proportion of us who
say we ‘always feel rushed’
jumped by more than half
between the mid
-
1960s and
the mid
-
1990s” (Putnam,
2000,
p
. 189)