Is Email ruining your life? Are you struggling with information overload? Are you not as productive as you would like to be? If the answer is yes then perhaps you should try taking part in the global ’No Email Day‘ which takes place on Wednesday 12th December (12/12/12).
The premise sounds simple enough - avoid email for 24hrs so you can be more productive with your time! All other methods of communication: phone, SMS, face-to-face, social media, or handwritten notes are fine. It’s just email that isn’t. A crazy idea? Maybe not…
What’s it all about?
The first No Email Day (11/11/11) went viral around the world after the original 9-page manifesto was read over 30,000 times on Slideshare following a story that was published on tech news site The Next Web. Subsequent weeks saw thousands of people blogging, Tweeting and sharing the manifesto around the world. The campaign received international support and media coverage by the BBC Radio 5 Live, Wall Street Journal, Wired, The Sunday Times and IBM Benelux even launched their own social media campaign ‘Outside The Inbox‘ to coincide with No Email Day.
Around 300 people actively took part in No Email Day 11/11/11 to varying degrees of success. The 2011 campaign seems to have split people’s opinion 50/50 on whether it’s a good or bad idea, genius or crazy. However, it’s clear that there are many people out there who say they need a day like this to help them focus on doing the ‘real work’ rather than just the busy work.
Admittedly not everyone will be able to go a full 24hrs without email but the main purpose of the campaign is to get people to think about how they are communicating, how often and whether it’s the best way to work or if they are actually creating more work for themselves and the recipients.
But could you really live without email in 2012, even just for a few hours? Senior people at IBM like Luis Suarez have been living in ‘A World Without Email‘ since February 2008 and are fully behind the campaign whilst Thierry Breton (Chairman and CEO of IT consultancy Atos) has declared that they will be email free in 2013.
Collaborative Working at Sage One
Sage One cloud-based software is all about providing businesses with the freedom and flexibility to work whenever and wherever they want. With this ethos in mind, the Sage One UK team I have recently joined at Sage (UK) Limited is incredibly social and collaborative.
We do still send email, but I’ve been very impressed by how much we communicate as a team offline through face-to-face conversations around our desks or in the office atrium, in daily stand-ups (Agile Marketing) and through tools like Trello to manage our tasks in 2-weekly sprints. We are also starting to experiment with Google+ hangouts which you will see us using more over the coming weeks and months.
For a company the size of Sage (over 1600 people in the Newcastle HQ) it’s obviously not realistic for everyone to participate in ‘No Email Day’ with such short notice, but I’ll certainly be giving it a go myself and you can read how I get on through our Facebook Page www.facebook.com/SageOneUK and on Twitter @lordlancaster.
If you’d like to take part in No Email Day 12/12/12, I recommend that you read the original manifesto at http://www.slideshare.net/lordlancaster/no-email-day-by-paul-lancaster, Follow the campaign on Twitter @NoEmailDayHQ and ‘Like’ it on Facebook at www.facebook.com/NoEmailDay for some moral support. Good luck!