Curated by Beth Kanter
The advice is from 1962 study and has been updated for today's daily battle with digital overload. The techniques are very much still valid.
1. Omission – The concept is simple: you can’t consume everything, so just ignore some. This is a bit dangerous since some of the omitted information might be the most critical. Imagine that the email you ignored was the one where your most important client alerts you to a new opportunity.
2. Error – Respond to information without giving due consideration. While a seemingly poor strategy, this is more common than you might think; I mean, who hasn’t reacted to an email, report, or telephone call without thinking through all the consequences because of time constraints or lack of attention?
3. Queuing – Putting information aside until there is time catch up later. An example is processing email early in the morning, before the business day begins, or reading important reports late at night.
4. Filtering – This is similar to omission except filtering employs a priority scheme for processing some information while ignoring others. Automated tools are particularly well suited to help filter information. Recommendation engines, search tools, email Inbox rule engines and Tivo are all good examples of tools that can help filter and prioritize information.
5. Employing multiple/parallel channels – Doling out information processing tasks; for example, assigning the tracking of Twitter feeds to one person and blog coverage to another person on your team.
6. Approximation – Processing information with limited precision. Skimming is an example of approximation. Like omission and error, you can process more information by approximating, but you run the risk of making critical mistakes
7. Escaping from the task – Making this someone else’s problem. While it sounds irresponsible, admitting you can’t ‘do it all’ and giving an assignment to someone else is sometimes the best strategy of all.