Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Technology & Tooling “Exploring Alternatives to Email” Series

“I get mail; therefore I am.”  Scott Adams (1957)

2010 Internet in Numbers

Email accounts worldwide – 2.9 billion
Emails sent on over the Internet – 107 trillion
Email messages sent per day – 294 billion

Electronic mail opened the door for more effective and timely business communications, but as with any tool, there have been many frustrations and hurdles to manage over the past several decades. Improper use of email for mass marketing, and spam, including: backscatter, viruses, and worms are some of the most notable problems that create unmanageable volumes of unsolicited emails, and excessive time spent to simply clean out and maintain a viable communications tool.  My first email account was at Spalding (the sporting goods manufacturer) in 1990, as an intern...they were on the bleeding edge of technology (at the time).

I was featured in a great article written by Joel Mathis in the June 2012 issue of MacWorld Magazine, “Stop Using Emails forEverything”, as at the time I was receiving upwards of 500 emails each day that must be read, deleted, responded to, filed, etc...consuming large chunks of time during my day, and I am far from alone in my inundation.   It should be noted that roughly 1/2 to 2/3 of the email was internal mail.  As COO of LAC-Group, I am tasked with the evaluation of new technology and tooling, achieving greater efficiencies, better communications and operations, internally with our large team of employees who work in one of our global offices or client locations all over the world. Our 300+ employees work in almost 65 different locations, and many have not met each other.

Join me over the next several weeks in this “Exploring Alternatives to Email” Series as I uncover and explore the history of electronic mail, how it works behind the scenes, the pros and cons of this massive worldwide communications tool, viable methodology for reducing excessive backscatter and high volumes, and the new technology and tooling available for more effective business communications in the future, perhaps replacing email altogether. As I continue in the series I'll also provide a view into our recent migration away from (internal) email - how we were successful, what we use and why.

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