When I read something I believe lawyers will find valuable I generally post it on my LinkedIn Coaching page and/or my Facebook Coaching page. Recently I posted a link to a Harvard Business Review blog by Peter Bregman titled: A Super-Efficient Email Process.  about handling email efficiently. Lamson Dugan and Murray lawyer, Brian Brislen, who blogs on: The Nebraska Litigation and Trial Advisor commented about the blog and I asked him to share his thoughts with you.

Cordell frequently addresses one issue that lawyers seem to have in common; a desire to simply have more time; more time for billable work, more time for family, more time to develop relationships with clients. In fact, that is one of the first things he and I discussed when we met for our first coaching session. One common way time seems to be sucked away is in reviewing and responding to email. Cordell recently passed along a blog by Peter Bregman that addresses how to take control of that problem.

Bregman suggests blocking out time during certain parts of the day to address email. He provides a suggested protocol to help you deal with each email without getting sucked in too deeply chasing links and getting involved in lengthy back and forth exchanges. In fact, the one piece of advice that jumped off the page to me was this:

  • I also do my best never to go back and forth with someone on email about something more than two or three times. If it’s gone that far, it’s usually a better idea to pick up the phone.

Perhaps this jumped out at me because of another recent article: Sanctions Motion Accuses Ex-Cozen Partner of Taunting ‘Pansy’ Opposing Counsel in Abusive Emails I had read while researching topics for a post to my blog. The article recounted a discovery issue, simply scheduling depositions no less, gone awry. It sure seemed to me that the email exchange there went on far too long before someone either

  1. Disengaged altogether, or
  2. Picked up the phone.

Everyone knows the blessing and curse of email. Bregman’s article provided another good suggestion on how to get control of that piece of the day. I appreciate Cordell passing it along and recommend it to you as well.

I enjoy reading Brian’s litigation blog, in part because it is not always about litigation. He and his colleagues include posts about their take on sports. See for example, Kyle Wallor’s post: Red Sox Cryptonite – .500