PAUL AND SARAH EDWARDS: LIFESTYLES FOR THE MILLENNIUM
need to sign up to see what’s on a site but don’t
want to risk getting on yet another e-mail list.
• Instantly delete jokes, stories and nonessential
articles you’re too busy to take a peek at, or set
them aside in a separate folder for when you
need a break.
Reply to everything else within 24 hours.
• If your work is such that you can respond as it
comes in, set an audible alert for incoming e-mail.
• If you can’t answer e-mail on the fly, as is the
case for most of us, set aside a time to do
e-mail—e.g., at the top of each hour, first thing
in the morning, right after lunch or before
leaving the office.
When it’s not possible to reply the same day,
• If you’re away from Internet access, arrange to
have an automatic bounce-back reply explaining
that you’re away from the office and when you
will respond, or, if the matter is urgent, how to
• If you’re in your office but unavailable, send a
quick reply explaining that you are eager to get
back to the writer as soon as you get a chance
to give the message the time it deserves. And
indicate a time frame for your reply—e.g.,
tomorrow, first of the week.
• Should you get behind a day or so, begin your
reply with an apology for not getting back sooner.
There’s no doubt about it: Keeping your door
open for business will mean business. C
Paul and Sarah
the authors of
16 other small-business books.
How to tame
the e-mail beast
IF YOU’RE IN BUSINESS, answering e-mail is like
having a storefront open for business. Failing to do
so is like hanging a “CLOSED” sign on your shop door.
Here are a few ideas for taming your e-mail,
seizing the opportunities it brings and building
goodwill—all at the same time.
Cut out the chaff.
• Install or use an Internet service provider (ISP)
with a spam blocker such as Postini, Message-Labs or MailScanner.
• Cull all the extraneous lists you’re on by
unsubscribing. If you’re concerned that
responding will put you on other mailing lists,
put the sender on your blocked sender list.
• Use a service such as Spamex or Sneakemail that
offers disposable e-mail addresses when you
“MORE WOMEN are starting
businesses than men, but
only 3 percent have reached
the $1 million milestone.
Count Me In is working to
change that.” So says Costco
member Nell Merlino, the
woman who started Take
Our Daughters to Work Day
and the driving force behind
Count Me In, a nonprofit
organization devoted to
promoting economic independence and the growth of
Toward that end, the
organization, with OPEN
from American Express, ® has
introduced the Make Mine a
Million Business™ program
org), which provides access
to money, mentoring, marketing and technology tools
that women entrepreneurs
need to help grow their
businesses. In the past year,
the program has helped 28
women become millionaires.
Who knows? Yours
could be the next million-dollar business. C
A flight plan to success
“ALL SUCCESSFUL people do
four things,” says Costco member
Brian Tracy, chairman and CEO
of Brian Tracy International
( www.briantracy.com), which
specializes in the training and
development of individuals and
organizations. “They set clear
goals, take risks beyond their
comfort zones and accept feedback and self-correct.” He adds,
“Above all, successful people
never give up.”
Using the analogy of air
travel, Tracy, author of Flight
Plan—The Real Secret of Success
2008), offers these steps to success.
Choose your destination.
Decide in advance exactly what
goals you want to achieve in
each area of your life.
Review your flight options.
Gather information to determine
all of the various ways you could
achieve a particular goal.
Write your flight plan. Only
3 percent of adults have written
goals, and they earn 10 times as
much as people who live from
day to day.
Prepare for your journey.
Take the time to get everything
together before you take off.
Take off at full throttle. Be
prepared to work wholeheartedly,
with all of your energy and determination, for a long time before
you achieve any worthwhile goal.
Plan for turbulence. Expect
setbacks, disappointment and
reversals as a normal and natural part of achieving anything
Make course corrections.
If something doesn’t work,
try something else, and then
something else again.
Accelerate learning and
progress. Learn from every
experience. Look into every setback as an opportunity to grow.
Seek valuable lessons contained
in your roadblocks and obstacles.
Avoid shortcuts and other
mirages. Be prepared to pay the
full price of success, in advance.
Forget easy money and get-rich-quick schemes. There aren’t any.
Master your fears. Develop
the habit of courage by confronting your fears rather than
Persist until you succeed.
Resolve in advance that you will
never give up until you achieve
According to Tracy, “You
have within you, right now,
everything you need to achieve
almost any goal you can set for
yourself. The only question is
how badly you want it, and how
hard are you willing to work to
get it. There are no limits.” C
Nev er, never ,
never give up.