Byline: Janet Falk
Like many public relations professionals, you have an active social media presence, walking the walk you advocate for your clients and promoting your practice.
In fact, you may be managing your clients’ social media accounts.
But what happens when your activity on email and social media consumes an inordinate amount of your time and attention?
A recent article in The New York Times caught my eye: I’m Addicted to My Phone. How Can I Cut Back?
Overuse of social media and screen time is not an issue for me, because I have put in certain safeguards that keep my social media and email activity within bounds. Here's what works for me — hopefully it works for you too!
1. Draw a line. Put your business email account and personal email account on your computer, tablet and cell phone so you can monitor them wherever you go.
On the other hand, keep your social media accounts on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter, etc., only on your computer and tablet, not on your cell phone.
Accordingly, you will engage in social media activity only when you are cool, calm and collected, with access to all your files, images and recordings on your computer and in the cloud.
2. Keep the dedicated email account for specific clients using their domain only on your computer. Have that email address simultaneously forward to your business email address, which is on your phone. Now you can monitor urgent requests, perhaps from contacts overseas, when you are out of the office.
As noted above, you will be in a quiet setting when you correspond with that client and have all your resources at your fingertips.
3. Limit the number of times you check your business email during the day. This is one I struggle with. I compose so many emails daily, it’s tempting to peek at my In Box and turn away from the work on my desk.
4. Rarely check your personal email account during the business day. Exercise restraint. Anyone who needs to reach you quickly will call you or text you.
5. Create a separate email account for retailers and nonprofit groups. Review that account infrequently, and only on your computer.
These promotional emails are not essential to your workday.
Your time is valuable and is primarily focused on your clients. You will protect your attention from distractions by social media and personal email with these safeguards.