E-mail addresses

Barry posted an excellent entry about instant communication. He asked the following questions about e-mail:

What is your email etiquette?
At work, I try to keep my e-mails as professional as possible. Once in a while I will have a somewhat informal conversation with a coworker, but if they become a friend I try to switch my communication with them to my personal e-mail. On personal e-mail I tend to write long e-mail responses and also try to respond to every e-mail I do not consider spam. I also consider spam chain mail and surveys unless they are my space stuff… I am not sure why but the medium there allows for a little more informal stuff.

How many email accounts do you use regularly?
I use 4 regularly. One for work (and only for work e-mail), one for serious professional communication, one for my friends and blog buddies, and an old one for pretty much everything else (registration on sites, auto e-mails from message boards and my site.)

How quickly do you check it? How quickly do you respond?
My work e-mail stays open at work and gets checked once a night almost every day. The rest are probably checked about 4 times a day.

Do you handle work emails and personal emails differently?
Yes, I try to write in a professional tone and be as prompt responding as possible to work e-mail. The other e-mails are secondary to other tasks, kind of if I have a chance I will check them… sometimes I do not check e-mail over weekend.

I used to be very addicted to the instant communication that e-mail provides. I used to be even more addicted to instant messaging. I have stopped both of those because they took too much of my time and attention not just to work but just to life in general. Anything done in excess I believe becomes a habit and at times a bad habit. Must of my friends have my cell phone number and if they need to get a hold of me right away they have that to talk to me. I have also realized that a phone conversation carries information and feelings better than e-mail.

I believe in having more than one e-mail address and separating e-mails by importance. I wrote about it on my password entry and I think that you should guard your e-mail by changing passwords constantly and using good passwords. Professionally I think that e-mail is a great place to keep track of tasks and communicate understanding after a meeting or a conversation with a coworker. E-mail trail is very important and it helps me remember what I was doing on what day. I now prefer my cell phone as my most instant way to communicate.