<img height="1" width="1" style="display:none" src="https://www.facebook.com/tr?id=289291844809425&amp;ev=PageView&amp;noscript=1">
Less Is More Blog Productivity Tips

Join us at the Webinars


Click for our Webinars Schedule.

The Perfect 15-Minute Day Method is here!


Order the book, eBook, journal, or eCourse to get started right away and inject a healthy dose of accomplishments and happiness in your workday and beyond!

Learn more!

Get Our Free eBook

The Results Curve: How to Manage Focused and Collaborative Time

Less-Is-More Blog by Pierre Khawand

Tip-Of-The-Month: The "new new" inbox--Get ready for the opportunities & challenges

Posted by Pierre Khawand on Fri, Feb 19, 2010 @ 10:02 AM

social mediaA few days ago, I posted an article about the Old terminology, new terminology: "People connecting with other people." A related topic that I have been thinking about is the "old" inbox and the "new" inbox. However the more I thought about it, the more I realized that there is even a newer inbox: The Social Media Inbox. What do these inboxes mean and what are the implications of the advent of the Social Media Inbox? Keep on reading!

The old inbox

I still remember the days when the inbox meant internal e-mail only. I was in Southern California at a technology company with about 100 employees at the time and everyone had access to Microsoft Outlook and used it for internal e-mail and for scheduling internal meetings. The external world was not "visible" to internal employees. There was no Internet, if you can imagine. Only a few people had access to MCI and a few others to Compuserve. These privileged people were able to connect to the external world but still had to go through hoops to do it.

The new inbox

Then came the Internet and suddenly the "new" inbox was born. The new inbox is connected to the whole world. This brought amazing opportunities and also an unprecedented e-mail overload. Every person ended up with a handful of e-mail inboxes ranging from work, to personal, to "throw-away" ones just to keep unwanted messages out of the way. Soon after came the invasion of the mobile devices and e-mail on the go. Consolidating messages into one e-mail application and/or synchronizing between multiple applications and devices became necessities and many of us have done some degree of consolidation and synchronization along the way.

And now meet the "new new" inbox: The Social Media Inbox

Then Web 2.0 snuck upon us! Now we are all part of the creation process and part of the conversation. Like never before, we the people can share information, participate in conversations, and build our own social networks. We are in direct contact with the people who once were invisible. Suddenly we are no longer just in our e-mail inbox(es). We are now as often or even more often in our new and expanded inboxes: Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, blogs, Yahoo Groups, Google Groups, YouTube channels, del.icio.us bookmarks, StumbleUpon articles, and you name it, which all together I am calling the Social Media Inbox.

This inbox is emerging as a powerful force and even the most authoritative search engines are re-inventing their search approach to include the Social Media Inbox.

So what does it all mean? What are opportunities and the challenges?

The Social Media Inbox brings some unique opportunities and some rather unique challenges as well. On the opportunities side:

  • We are connected with 100's of millions of people and are able to have real time conversations with them
  • We are learning what they are like and how they think (market research)
  • We are discussing our brand and the value that we bring to the table (marketing)
  • We are influencing their buying decisions (sales)
  • We are exchanging ideas and building on each other's ideas (innovation)
  • And the list continues!

On the challenges side:

  • We are faced with more information overload than ever before
  • We are constantly interrupting our core activities to keep up with what is going on in the world
  • We are not necessary leveraging this new inbox to the extent that we could
  • And the list continues!

What does your Social Media Inbox (SMI) look like and how are you managing it?

If you haven't yet expanded your definition of the "inbox" and explored the Social Media world, this is the time to do so. Some exciting opportunities are awaiting you. If you have, this is the time to reflect further on the opportunities and challenges and how they can be managed to help us be more effective in the workplace and beyond.

As we continue to explore this topic and explore best practices to manage the SMI, we need your help! Please share your thoughts below or fill out this short Social Media Inbox survey (5 to 10 minutes) and we will share the survey results with you.

Take the Social Media Inbox survey and become part of the conversation!

Topics: twitter, tip-of-the-month, social media, email management

Social Media best practices! Common sense but not commonly practiced

Posted by Pierre Khawand on Fri, Feb 12, 2010 @ 03:22 PM

social media"Motivation Day 2K10" (organized by California Staffing Professionals) started today with a keynote by Craig Silverman, Partner and Vice President of Sales & Marketing at Albin Engineering, which was indeed insightful and motivating. Among the many things that Craig shared with the audience were these questions which he encouraged everyone to reflect upon and answer:

  • How do I rank my ability to ask good questions
  • How do I rank my ability to listen
  • How strong is my understanding of my clients businesses and how they buy
  • How good is my ability to track metrics, progress, and results
  • How strong is my ability to develop great relationships

There were additional reflections, but I just want to highlight these areas because I would like to suggest that these apply not only to our success with our motivation in pursuing business goals, and our effectiveness in dealing with customers, but just as well in our Social Media effort.

The Social Media experts continue to stress the important of listening to the conversation instead of simply broadcasting messages (Brian Solis) and staying on brand instead of entertaining everyone with our lunch or weekend plans (Jason Alba in his lunch & learn webinar with us last year) and Elaine Starling (in her lunch & learn webinar last Fall). So could we extract some simple but valuable Social Media best practices from these insights?

A few simple best practices for our Social Media conversations

Best Practice #1: Observing and listening before jumping in and/or hijacking the conversation.

Best Practice #2: Contributing with relevant and compelling content; not the chatter! or use the 80/20 rule. In this case 80% compelling, 20% chatter.

Best Practice #3: Tracking progress and results using metrics that are carefully defined

This is a start, and now your turn to add to this! Please share your comments below!

More resources

Topics: social media, business results

Old terminology, new terminology: "People connecting with other people"

Posted by Pierre Khawand on Wed, Feb 10, 2010 @ 08:33 AM

Time management tipsBrian Solis & Deirdre Breakenridge in their book Putting the Public Back in Public Relations talk about the new terminology in the social media era. Old terminology, before Web 2.0 and social media, refers to messages that get broadcast to users. New terminology refers to conversations that are shared with people. Brian and Deirdre also refer to what Josh Bernoff from Forrester wrote about his frustration with the term "users". Web users are no longer "users" he says. Knowing that we are at 80% of Net penetration in the US for instance, these "users" are now "people" looking for information. In the social media era, "users" are "people connecting with other people".

The most important part is not the terminology but the thinking that goes with the terminology. Thinking in terms of people and conversation changes everything. It creates a two-way street that allows all of us to change and learn in the process.

I believe that in training (or "learning" in the new terminology) and productivity ("accomplishment" in the new terminology) a similar terminology and mind shift are happening. Here is a start for comparing old and new terminology:

Traditional ways to refer to things  The new terminology and mindset 
 Users, attendees, trainees   People, participants, learners
 Messages, course material, presentations   Conversations, topics, interactions
 Time management, getting organized, being productive   Working well, optimizing, accomplishing

You additions and comments are welcome!

Topics: social media, time management tips, getting organized

Question and Answer: How do I post a question on LinkedIn and can I send it to everyone in my network?

Posted by Pierre Khawand on Wed, Feb 03, 2010 @ 02:58 PM

Social Media, LinkedInI get this question from time to time from workshop participants who are getting into social media or who are trying to leverage it in new and useful ways.

If you haven't been using LinkedIn to post questions and answer questions, below are the steps to get you started. If you have, but haven't been engaged in recently, hopefully this will motivate you to get back into it and post your question soon:

Posting a question on LinkedIn

  1. Once you login to LinkedIn, click on "More..." and then select "Answers" from the popup menu.
  2. Once you click on Answers, you will get to the Answers Home page which has an "Ask a Question" box where you can post a brief version of your question and press the Next button.
    Social Media, LinkedIn
  3. Once you click on the Next button, you will get to a longer form where you can enter the detailed question as well as assign the appropriate categories.
  4. Then you get the opportunity to send your question (via a LinkedIn generated e-mail) to your network. This form looks like an e-mail:
    Social Media, LinkedIn
  5. If you click on the small icon to the right of the "To" field, you will be able to select up to 200 contacts from your network, all a note to the e-mail, and send it with the click of a button.
  6. In addition to the 200 people, your question is also posted on the Answers section, so that other people can also view it and answer it (people who happen to be interested in this topic).

I look forward to seeing your questions and answers on LinkedIn!

Other resources

  • Jason Alba's book "I'm on LinkedIn, Now What???"
  • Jason Alba's Using LinkedIn to Find a Job in Today's Economy complimentary lunch & learn webinar recording available on the "Accomplishing more with less group" on Facebook!

Topics: social media, Technology

Is “e-mail” on its way out? And is “Social Media” taking over?

Posted by Pierre Khawand on Sat, Nov 14, 2009 @ 10:56 AM

This is the first post in what is likely to become a series of reflections on the role of e-mail and Social Media today and the upcoming years.

After 15 years of internet, is e-mail hanging on by a weak thread?

email managementE-mail is overused and even abused, and users' mailboxes are congested--worse than traffic in the busiest metropolitan areas of the world. People are tired of scrolling up and down the inbox and many stopped looking at, and not to mention responding to, e-mail messages except for the urgent messages from their bosses or customers. Reaching people via e-mail (unless you are their boss or customer) has become quite challenging. It is "extreme" e-mail fatigue that we are suffering from. So many things fall through the cracks and so many inefficiencies are invading the work place and our personal lives. Does this sound like "chaos"? Well it is!

Is Social Media taking over?

time on social mediaWhile Web 2.0 tools (such as blogs, wikis, and Microsoft SharePoint) are emerging as the better alternatives for collaboration and information sharing, in this post, I am interested in focusing on the Social Media platforms and reflecting on their relationship to e-mail today and in the future.

Social media is the new kid on the blog (relatively new compared to good old e-mail).  People are still excited about the Social Media platforms. Even though these platforms are quite busy, they tend to be less intrusive than e-mail, and they give users the ability to scan the feed casually and jump in and respond only when they desire to do so. The expectations are less while the reach is much broader. And these platforms provide messaging functionality (similar to e-mail and Instant Messaging) which seem to get more attention and better response time than the traditional e-mail. 

And now the questions about the future of e-mail and social media

  • Where do you see the future of e-mail versus Social Media? 
  • Will it get to our work life as well (having more structured enterprise Social Media platforms that would include collaboration and social media all in one within the firewall)? 
  • Will the traditional "public" e-mail approach eventually go away?
    What do you think of this hypothetical chart showing how the time spent on e-mail (and therefore the role of e-mail) will diminish over the next few years while the time spent on Social Media will increase. E-mail me YOUR  version of this chart (training@people-onthego.com):

Graph: Hypothetical hours spent per week on E-mail versus Social Media!


Topics: social media, time on social media, email management