September 28, 2022

Archives for May 2022

UNSUBSCRIBE!! Get Off Email Lists or Re-Route Sales Pitches

One source of productivity drag and friction is the clogging of your Inbox with email you don’t need.

Claim professionals at all organization strata get their names on all sorts of mailing lists – both email and hard copy mail. These might be mail from trade journals, defense attorneys, structured settlement firms, surveillance outfits, rehab specialists, engineers, coverage lawyers, conference organizers on topics of little interest or relevance.

Social media is another culprit. LinkedIn can be another source of unneeded spam-like email. (I understand that Hawaiians consider SPAM a delicacy,
but here I draw the line.) Whenever I receive a LinkedIn contact invitation from someone I don’t know whose job title involves marketing, production, and so on, I generally decline.

I also bristle when someone unexpectedly sends me a LinkedIn connection request, I accept, and their first DM to me is . . . a sales pitch. Or, ”When would be a good time for a call to learn more about your business?” “Uh, well … NEVER!”

Enough of that! That is typically when I drop them as a LinkedIn contact.

One way to save time and slim down your In-Box is to squelch these.

At least most of these lists are free but, in terms of your time, they exact a cost. Though they may cost no money, they bleed time: time to read and keep up with discussion threads, time to scan them to see if they still hold your interest, time spent managing email, playing digital Traffic Cop, time spent printing out and archiving posts you want to save. In isolation, none of these tasks consume a lot of time.

Taken together as a daily activity, though, such practices exact an opportunity cost in bleeding from you time that you could spend more fruitfully on other projects, files and initiatives.

Unsubscribe to mailing lists that are no longer find value-added or would just take too much time to keep up with. Every email list serve typically includes instructions for how to unsubscribe.

Then there is the more obvious spam consisting of purported cures for erectile dysfunction, hot stock tips or the deposed King of Nigeria who wants you to hold $5 million for him in trust. Any email that you are confident that you don’t need to see should be nuked. In MS Outlook, there are a few ways to do this. One way is to open the email, then look for a button that reads “BLOCK SENDER.” Press that and the email will no longer clutter your In-Box (at least email from that particular address – spammers are resourceful in generating mail from multiple and shape-shifting addresses.

Another tip: highlight that email, right-click your mouse and look for an option reading, “Create Rule.” This will let you direct that any such future email message goes directly to your DELETED folder trashcan.

If you still have an interest in the newsletter or mailing, create a separate folder and a rule to reroute such incoming email to that location. That way, it acts as a holding pen for materials that you want to read but don’t have any urgency attached to them.

Another approach: have multiple, “dummy” email addresses (such as through gMail) and use those when you sign up for “free” webinars, white paper downloads, and other deliverables offered to you so that vendors can capture your contact information for future marketing efforts.

For each email you receive, ask yourself, “Do I still really want to remain on this mailing or marketing list?”

If the answer is “no,” unsubscribe puts your inbox on Slim-Fast and tapers the time wasted by scrolling through and triaging incoming email.

This step won’t solve the email overload problem. There is no one single magic bullet solution to slay this productivity beast. (Stay tuned for other tips in future posts.) It will take more than one arrow to slay the email beast and unlock your next-level productivity, but this step will put you on the right trajectory.

What tools work for you in minimizing the amount of unwanted, unsolicited email vying for your attention in creating distractions?


Thanks for reading. I am an insurance claim consultant who helps clients assess claim-handling and improve outcomes through expert evaluation and testimony in high-stakes insurance disputes. I also have a particular interest in optimizing time productivity among claim professionals, litigation management and expert witnessing. If you have a comment or a request for a future topic, please contact me at

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