Is it ok to respond to emails on holidays?
I prefer to check my emails regularly, including holidays and weekends to keep my inbox clean. Otherwise, I get a lot of emails that pile up and I hate that. But I always wonder if it is bad practice to respond to emails on holidays. I don't want people to think they need to respond back on a holiday, but I want to stay on top of things.
As an entrepreneur, we all know our busiest days are the days before and after a holiday or the days before and after a vacation! Anything we can do to minimize the amount of work on those days is a temptation. I don't think people will fault you for emailing on a holiday, and if the recipients are people you closely work with, tell them there's no obligation to respond on a holiday. I've done that plenty of times saying something like - "I know its a holiday so please feel free not to respond today" etc.
On a side note though, try to take that holiday/vacation time as R&R. Can't work 24 hours a day and even if you could, its no good for your physical or mental health. We can't all think clearly and be the best entrepreneurs we can be without taking that pause. Its all about balance and finding a healthy path as you grow your business. Good luck and let me know if I can help you in any way.
If you email me on a holiday I won't mind, because I won't see it. Even if I check emails on a holiday, I'm only scanning to see if there's one from a very close person. Others I leave until the next day.
It would be a mistake for you to email me on a holiday and expect me to answer you the same day.
However, if somebody emails you on a holiday, I don't see how they could object if you respond.
If it is your business certainly. Even if you are not the owner, reading and responding during holidays & weekends frees up time during the valuable working hours. If you are concerned about people's opinions about working during your off time you could always schedule (function in outlook) each email to go out during the regular work week.
Do you have your own url email address or do you use Gmail, Yahoo or even worse AOL?
If you don't have your own Website, I suggest you get one and set up mail accounts.
Using one of those gives the perception that you are small and unprofessional.
"Business is about perception first, reality second".
I believe in keeping my emails inbox down to the minimum, as well, and I think it is ok to reply with a simple email, ( perhaps Virtual message) acknowledging that you have received their email, and will attend to it, depending what they are requesting on their email, as soon as you can. Perhaps stating a time frame, to put their mind at ease....!
I agree with the majority. This is a common practice. We all have downtime over the holidays and it is natural to start weeding through our inbox. It is not impolite to respond to e-mails on a holiday, it is - however - inconsiderate to expect an immediate reply. Those that are available will read your e-mail and respond as they find time. Happy holidays!
I understand your concerns. I absolutely feel it is ok because I do it myself. But I also often caveat my responses with "Just wanted to respond real quick while fresh in my mind and before I get back to my holiday. I don't plan on checking email again until __________ so no rush to respond on your part. Have a great holiday!
If someone sent you an e mail on a holiday, other than spam or holiday wishes, then I would think they would expect a prompt response. I would. To me it is discourteous not to respond to e mails from others, but many people don't respond in a timely manner, or at all. It's pretty easy to respond even if you are not interested to avoid another follow-up e mail about the same thing. My feeling is if someone made the effort to send me an e mail then I feel obligated to respond promptly and professionally - either positively or negatively.
For the very reason you allude to, I tend to not answer a significant email during holidays. We all get a lot of emails and they tend to "pile up", as you say, especially during holidays. If I want my email response to be noticed, I want the recipient to not lose it among a lot of emails. For that reason, if I believe that my response is important, I wait until the next business day to send it. This also means that the recipient will be able to receive it, read it and respond right away and not forget about what I said.
No it's not ok in my opinion. As an business owner you need to have a work life balance. You need to rest and recharge. You also need to train your clients when you are available and when you're not. This way they don't expect you to respond 24/7. Now if you are that busy, which first congratulations! Second you need to look at increasing your team, possibly a virtual assistant who answers your e-mails to help keep your e-mail box clean.
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...unless the sender needs a reply ASAP, I write responses, save them as drafts and send later. Get as much out of your down time as possible.
It depends what you function is in the company or maybe in your own business. When it's your own business then it is for sure needed to check each day your emails and to delegate it. When you are working as an employee it can be necessary too but only the very urgent emails, otherwise they can see it as normal that you do this. Delegate as possible too if the task will take too much time. Otherwise you can give a brief response.
Good luck to you and your business. Raf Meysmans
Yes but only give brief responses.
Try to delegate if possible,
If it's not a very high priority indicate to them that you are on leave and will address this when you return (giving the day after you actually return). Ask them if this is ok, or if it requires immediate attention ask them to let you know.
90% of the time they will hold on till you get back.
Its just polite and good manners to respond to email within a reasonable time.
It's a personal choice, to unplug 100% or to take 10 minutes daily to respond to emails.
There is pro and con. On the pro side, you may solve some blocking issues from time to time.
On the con side:
- you may become email addict
- you may make your organization dependent on you and loose autonomy
- you may make your employees feel they have to do the same - and worse: create a competitive atmosphere between those that do and those that don't
Give them a break when you're out. Do not reply unless it's absolutely urgent. Create alternate communication channels for urgent matters and give them freedom to handle day-to-day matters. This may avoid the Big-Brother effect on your company
If you have got some time to attend and respond some emails, there's no harm. It keeps inbox minimized and the receiver will feel good being attended on time. If it is holiday, you can always end with a note, "Please respond back at your convenience when you're back from Holidays".
Staying on top means reading emails and responding with updated information, that includes weekends and holidays.
Hi, you would attend to your emails on your availability, urgency or priority. Therefore you would expect the same from the other end. A communication with a greeting is always well received, no matter what time of the season it may be, so no harm in responding to emails during holidays but do not expect the spontaneous response. Good Luck.