Total Workday Control Using Microsoft Outlook 5th Edition, Kindle Edition
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Other than reading about “Inbox Zero” I haven’t read much of anything on organizing email, so I don’t have much to really compare it to. I should also note that I don’t use the GTD method, or anything else, for organizing tasks.
With that said, I found that this book delivered a plan to use Outlook to accomplish exactly what I was look to do: reduce inbox and organize tasks.
The plan in this book worked out great on a number of levels for me. The book didn't just focus on folder organization and use, but approached organization as a workflow to be managed across various tools found in Outlook. It also reintroduced me to features of Outlook I had previous dismissed, such as task usage, and demonstrated their value in an over plan to organize email and tasks.
Aside from the organizational plan, I really like the way the book was put together. Instead of going through chapter after chapter to get the big picture how everything fits together, the book starts off with a quick start guide, so you can start implementing the method straight out of the gate. It actual made me more interested in reading the rest of the book, as oppose to being give portions of the method over hundreds of pages. Great job on the author or editors part for structuring the book like that.
While skeptical at first, and and hesitant about getting pulled into some over-organizational method, this book really payed off for me. It took me a 2-3 weeks before I was finally able to get my inbox under control and move into using tasks. But the method outlined in this book worked for me.
It's not that there's no valuable information there, I don't think. I'm sure I'll learn something from the book, probably more than enough to justify the purchase price. But I resent having my time wasted with all the fluff.
Like you (if you're reading this review you're probably in the same boat), my Outlook Inbox used to have hundreds of emails in it at all times and I had uncountable numbers of .pst folders to store all of my historical exchanged. Now I have less than 20 emails at the end of a typical day, but I'm still getting everything done. I'm actually getting it done BETTER...
There's some hype in the book too, of course, but it's easy enough to filter out so you can get to the meat of the subject.
I built my Outlook filters/rules/etc. from scratch at first by following the instructions in this book. At one point, I decided that I'd like to save some time so I tried the TWC software package (don't worry, you'll see it advertised in the book). That worked for a while, but I wanted more control over it so I ended up scrapping the software and doing the whole thing from scratch. *If you're on a corporate Exchange infrastructure, this approach works well because Exchange will likely store all your rules and views for you (meaning that if you change your computer you won't have to 're-build' it all). If you're on a stand-alone system, you might prefer the TWC software solution for expedience's sake.*
If you're clobbered by your email, give this a read, it can definitely help you better manage your electronic dog-leash.
This is not only informative, he tells things like they really are and 'shows us' HOW TO overcome specific problems and issues.
I'd recommend this one to ANYONE who needs to improve on their time and task management, especially when it comes to e-mails and keeping better track and control over their daily workload.
Indeed, it is very important that one FOLLOWS Mr. Linenberger's processes and methodology almost to the letter and you WILL get the biggest bang for results. He even starts us out with a 'Quick Start' process to get us acquainted and in my opinion, that's what got me off to a GREAT start.
This is indeed a GREAT read. I doubt you'll be disappointed, unless of course, your looking only for SHORTCUTS.
This book doesn't just teach you how to organize mail, but also how to manage tasks. TASKS is the main point of this book. Highly recommended.
FYI: there is a 4th edition of this book that is out. If you are thinking of buying 3rd edition, make sure you check out the 4th edition first. I bought this before finding out that a 4th edition was out. Still worth the purchase.
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