1.    Do you have a Blackberry? Trying to juggle meetings, picking up your laundry and waiting for that all important email? Configure your email accounts to your smartphone to get your emails on the go.

2.    Be different: Use a different email address for different purposes. Remember, your company email address doesn’t belong to you. Besides, having a personal email will allow you to switch off from work easier – an important message from your boss may spoil your evening.

3.    Play nice: Like anything online, don’t say anything that you wouldn’t say in person and remember to keep your email concise. You are not the only person that deals with hundreds (sometimes thousands) of emails a day.

4.    Throw out the trash: No one likes a spammer and unfortunately spammers will always find a way in creeping into your inbox when you least expect it. Make use of the 'blocked' list service and add spammers' email addresses and their domains onto this list.

5.    Be Fussy:
If you open every email as it pops into your inbox, you will never have time for anything else. Look at the sender's name and subject line first. Reply to the message only if it will be quick. If a client sends you a message where you need to give it some thought before you send the response, send him or her acknowledgement of the email and inform them that you will respond as soon as possible. For less important emails, setup a holding folder for you to action later.

*Carolyn Holgate is the General Manager of MWEB Connect. Visit MWEB on www.mweb.co.za.