The Target Advocate
IN THIS ISSUE

Hello, how are you?

- Feature Article: What to do when your Inbox is a disaster

- Featured Network Partner: David Worrel

- Summer Reading: Responses to last month's reading list

- About Doubet Consulting

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August 17, 2005

Vol. 1, Issue 6

Published the third week of every month.

A NOTE FROM BETH

Dear Friend,

Hello! I hope you are all staying cool during these hot summer days in August. In my hope to stay cool and indoors this month, I decided to contact some old friends to see what they are up to.

Well, most of those I spoke to felt that when it's too hot to go outside, organizing your office my be the best way to move your business in the right direction.

Our featured network partner is David Worrel. David is a great resource when looking for help with tough financial and strategic problems, including fundraising.

I am also really pleased from the responses to last month's summer reading segment. To work with the theme of my article about balance, I specifically chose books that were not business focused. I can't tell you how many emails I received lamenting the lack of business themed books. I guess no matter how much you try to get away from the office, reading a book about business is relaxing.

See you in September!

Beth

Beth Silver
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FEATURE ARTICLE:
What do to when your Inbox is a disaster

By Beth Silver

A few weeks ago, a colleague commented about how empty her Microsoft Outlook Inbox was. All of her emails were organized in folders or deleted and she could not believe how organized and focused she now was on what mattered in her business.

After hearing the excitement in her voice, I decided it was time to see if I could tackle the 1856 emails that were in my Inbox. I have to be honest. I am an organized person who knows where almost everything is, but could I be more productive with a little more organization? Well, the answer is YES. My email now has been 20-60 emails at a time and, I must admit, my digital life is easier than ever.

Here is how I did it.

Be in the Mood!

If you are not excited about organizing your Inbox, don't. Look at this project as a way of finding lost treasures and making things easier to find. Organizing your inbox does not have to be done in one sitting. In fact, I organized my Inbox in 2 sittings, which ended up taking up about 3 hours of my time.

Don't be afraid to Delete:

If you keep everything, you won't be able to prioritize what you should keep. I realized that I was keeping emails that said "Thanks" even when I had later entries in the thread, which had the information I would need later.

Think realistically:

At what time in your business is an email null and void? I am sure it changes from project to project, but do you need every correspondence for projects that ended a year ago? Think about what you need. If you think you will need it for the future, see if it would be easier to print them put them in a paper folder.

File as you go - Don't wait to put things away:

Don't be afraid to create folders and sub folders. Folders help you keep yourself organized, but if you don't keep putting email in the folders, you are causing more work for yourself. Each month, I now plan to look at all of my sub folders to see what can be deleted.

User your planner or calendar as your guide:

My calendar is invaluable when recording ideas and structuring when you want to answer those emails that require more think time. The great thing about this tip is once it's done, you can delete the email!

Respond now or flag for the future:

I often flag emails that I need to follow up with in the future. I find it to be a helpful reminder that allows me to keep on top of my projects. If you are not sure about the reminder function in your email program, mark the email name and date in your calendar. That will ensure that you take care of it.

Archive does not mean delete:

Be aware that the archive reminder in Outlook does not mean that Outlook wants to throw your stuff away. I have learned that Archived mail is moved into a PST file and resides on your computer. You always have the ability at any time to retrieve it.

Recruit help if needed:

If you don't think that you are ready to tackle organizing your inbox or your office alone, there are many professionals that can help you. Sonya Weisshappel of Seriatim is an organizer who works with people who need help organizing their offices and homes.

After three weeks, I am proud to say that I often end the day with 15 emails in my Inbox. Some days it's more and others it's less. I am more productive and confident knowing where things are. The next step in my organization plan is my bookshelf! Storage and the donation bin, here I come. Happy Organizing!

Other organizing resources:

If you are in the organizing mood, these resources may be of help.

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FEATURED NETWORK PARTNER: David Worrell

This month's Featured Networking Partner is David Worrell. David is an entrepreneur, mentor and writer who helps entrepreneurs start and grow new companies. His expertise is in healthcare, financial services, dot-com and telecom, but after speaking with him its quite clear that his experiences work in almost any industry. His passion and understanding of the issues entrepreneurs experience in their business gives business owners an edge they would not have had before. David solves his client's tough financial and strategic problems, including fundraising, and often acts as a mentor and/or part time CFO for fast growing businesses. Feel Golf, a manufacturer of the Full Release Grip™, and Benson Birthing Ropes, a manufacturer of a non-invasive medical device which shortens a new moms labor (pushing) time by as much as 80%, are just two examples of the types of businesses David works with.

I first met David when I picked up the phone. He called my office out of the blue to see if I knew of synergies for a project he was working on. It was a great conversation and a lot of fun!

David is also a regular contributor to the "Raising Money" section of Entrepreneur Magazine and author of "Finding Funding," an e-book that helps entrepreneurs find the best solutions to fund their business. If you are trying to start a new business, buy equipment, hire employees, or just fund your fast growing company, this book will be a great guide for you.

To learn more about David, visit his personal website, where he provides tools he feels are indispensable for funding a business and his professional site for Monterey Venture Partners. You can also find him on LinkedIn and Plaxo. If you would like to contact him directly, David can be reached at 704-372-5012 or david@dworrell.com.

David Worrell
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Summer Reading

Last month, I passed on some of the suggestions I have received for summer reading and asked you what you thought. Although that was an intentional choice on my part, not to include any business books, here are the books, others on our list suggested to me:

You Need to Be a Little Crazy
by Barry Moltz

Win the Crowd
by Steve Cohen

Instant Persuasion
by Laurie Puhn

How to Hire and Develop Your Next Top Performer
by Herbert M Greenberg

Finding Funding
by David T. Worrell

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ABOUT DOUBET

At Doubet Consulting, we help our clients acquire new clients, retain the good ones, become more profitable and move their business forward. We identify, create, and implement effective marketing and business strategies for entrepreneurs and small to mid-sized companies. As Target Advocates we take a comprehensive look at your overall business, ensuring that you effectively meet the needs of your target customers. Businesses often refer to themselves as a piece of a pipeline and we look for and fix gaps in that pipe, making it whole so that it works more efficiently.

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