How Fast Should Church Leaders Reply to Email?

If you’re like most church leaders, you probably constantly struggle with a full email in-box. Some email is necessary, to be sure. But many times, it gets overwhelming. Too many people want a piece of your day… and email is the perfect way to demand at least a piece of your time and attention. But how long should it take you to reply to email? The HR Capitalist gives some suggestions: 1.  They suggest the right amount of time is 4-5 hours to respond.  Their reasoning:  if you reply too quickly, people will think you have a ton of time to respond.  If you take too long, people feel ignored.  So… they suggest a 4-5 hour delay.  Seems reasonable to me. 2.  They also suggest that you adjust your response time according to the person who sent the email.  We all kind of do this naturally, I think… Your boss should probably get a quicker (read that as near immediate) response.  Your peers should be within the 4-5 hour window; and others might be a tad bit longer. 3.  The suggest that you never, ever be the first one (in fact, you should be the last one) to reply to the dreaded CC: message.  You almost always look smarter not being the first to respond.
4.  They suggest sending fewer replies… especially when you’re ticked.  Don’t click send on that type of email.  It can and will be used against you at some point; and you’ll regret it. I use a nice plug-in for gmail that changes the date received on all my emails to how long it’s been sitting in my inbox.  So rather than saying an email arrived at 12:03 pm today, it says that it arrived 3 hours ago.  It helps give a little better perspective on how I’m doing in this area.  (I’m using Chrome and Gmail… and the extension is called “Reply Now“) How long does it take you (on average) to reply to email?  And how many emails do you have in your inbox right now?  (Leave a comment below if you would!) Right now, I have 5 emails in my inbox (which is pretty good for me!) Todd HT:  HR Capitalist