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Michael Hyatt: Great trick for tracking delegated emails

Working Smart: Automated Email Follow-up

I’ve mentioned before the value of not abdicating responsibility for items you’re waiting on from others. Here, Michael Hyatt posts a great tip for making sure that tasks you’ve delegated via email stay on your radar screen. Basically you BCC these items to yourself and run a mail rule to shunt your reminder into the correct folder.

Now, whenever you want to track an assignment that you are delegating via e-mail, just enter your “waitingfor” e-mail address in the BCC field. (Since most e-mail software packages sport an auto-fill feature, you can generally do this with a few keystrokes.) Now, send your e-mail. If everything is set up correctly, your e-mail will go out from your main account and you will receive back an e-mail from your new “waitingfor” account. Your email rule will automatically file it in your “Waiting For” folder.

Very clever idea. And I’m thinking that with a bit of AppleScript fu, it would be easy for an Entourage rule to not only move the item to the waiting folder, but to also automagically generate a “Flag for Follow-up” Task for a week or so later under your “Waiting” category. Who’s up for a little Lazy Web, huh?

Also, unless I’m mistaken, you don’t actually need a second email account to do the “YOURNAME+anything@example.com” trick. Just use your regular old email address, in the format described; I believe most (if not all) email servers ignore anything between the “+” and the “@”. Update 2005-09-15 11:55:59: I was incorrect; you do need a second email account. Lo siento.

[via Lifehacker]

About Merlin

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Merlin Mann is an independent writer, speaker, and broadcaster. He’s best known for being the guy who created the website you’re reading right now. He lives in San Francisco, does lots of public speaking, and helps make cool things like You Look Nice Today, Back to Work, and Kung Fu Grippe. Also? He’s writing this book, he lives with this face, he suffers from this hair, he answers these questions, and he’s had this life. So far.

Merlin’s favorite thing he’s written in the past few years is an essay entitled, “Cranking.”




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