Never Read an Email Twice: Introducing the "OHIO" Method

Only handle your email once. Then get on with your workday.
Managing Editor and Producer, Behance Inc.
February 20, 2013 Inbox Zero. Getting Thing Done. There's no shortage of strategies to handle the flood of emails we receive on a daily basis. But most of us can agree: the less we stare at our inbox, the more time we can spend focusing on stuff that matters.

Which is why we should praise Fast Company for recommending the "OHIO" method when handling our emails:

That stands for "only handle it once"—a technique that's espoused by productivity expert Bob Pozen and practiced by Huge CEO and Fast Company contributor Aaron Shapiro.

"No 'I'll respond later' is allowed," Shapiro says. "Responding later means you take three times longer to get through your email than taking care of it the first time, because responding later means you have to waste time finding and rereading that email... or even worse, the time wasted reminding yourself over and over to get to that message."


This tactic requires more of an active mindset when using email, no more taking five minutes to mindlessly check your messages on your phone. It requires you to block out time and attack email aggressively, not putting off anything until later.

Read the entire Fast Company post here.

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Sean Blanda is the Associate Editor and Producer of 99U. You can find him on Twitter: @SeanBlanda.