In 2017, approximately 132 billion business emails will be sent and received per day, according to The Radicati Group.
But Australian media agency Atomic 212 won’t be contributing to that statistic.
“We’ve totally cut out all internal emails,” the company’s CEO Jason Dooris told Business Insider.
Dooris says he was tired of people relying on email as the primary means of communication with their coworkers. “In the office I don’t see it as a necessity, when the people you’re emailing are only a few [steps] away and you can chat with them,” he says.
The type of email that especially aggravated him were the “delegation” emails because they created tension between coworkers that could have easily been avoided if they had spoken in person. He says if you need to ask a coworker in the office for a favour, then you should ask them to their face out of professional consideration.
Ever after-work emails, which Dooris calls “the bane of modern employees,” were nixed to give employees time to disconnect from their work obligations. “When you’re not at work you shouldn’t be worried about checking your emails,” he argues, “and it’s only become a problem since emails came into use.”
To fill in the hole left by emails, Atomic 212 now relies on Wunderlist to track tasks, Dropbox to share files, and face-to-face contact for anything else — except for calendar invites, which they’re allowed to send by email.
So what about external emails? Those are allowed and mainly just sent to clients, but they’re next on the cutting board, Dooris says. He believes employees would have better relationships with clients if they bonded in person, rather than through a screen or over the phone.
So far, he says some of their clients were taken aback at this “crazy” practice that seems anti-2016. But overall, he says they have had a response of excitement and positivity. “Many of our clients and other companies love the idea of turning back the clock to the days before email.”
Because email was the primary means of work communication, Dooris admits that there was some hesitance from employees to comply in the first few days of the transition period. However, while “there is still a long way to go,” he says everyone has already noticed “a positive change in the attitude and culture of the office.”
But just to make sure no secret email chains are flying under the radar, he says the IT department is tracking all internal emails. They haven’t had any incidents yet, he says, especially now that the initial shock has worn off and everyone “has sunk into the new system quite nicely.”
And the best part of this new norm is the change in the atmosphere, Dooris concludes. “Before, there were just too many occasions of listening to the sounds of the office and only hearing the clicking of keyboard. Now you can hear the excitement and people talking.”
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