28 Jul 2016
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Susan McNeill, Quality & Compliance Manager

Work-life balance: Susan on Radio 4, aerial yoga & deleting emails

This blog post was created by Susan McNeill, Global Quality & Compliance Manager for Sodexo UK & Ireland

Radio 4 (which I love.  Just LOVE) (it is a Generational thing it really is) has had a series of articles about work-life-balance.  They totally have.  Anyway I can’t pretend, I didn’t hear them all but I heard the Friday one erm part of it, as I drove to the gym for the Aerial Yoga shaming.  In fact my regular instructor is away and we had a stand-in who was ferocious and made me realise that the regular instructor is easy-peasy.  Oh-my this one, let’s call her Bethany (because that was her name) looked like a quiet, shy girl and was a total nightmare.  A nightmare.  We spent half the class upside down and doing things that I wouldn’t have imagined were possible.  Shudder.

Anyway, Radio 4, back to that loveliness.  So, the concept was, desks that disappear into the ceiling at 6pm. How amazing.  So you are sitting in the office, or at home and come 6 o’clock and BOOM – your desk has vanished and you have. To. Stop. Work.  Wow.  Have to.  What a lovely concept.  Also, and I am not making this up, one of the contributors was talking about email management.  She said that if you are a “cc” on an email it means that it is irrelevant to you.   < stop and think about that for a minute >  So her advice was to create a rule that files emails where you are a “cc” in a special folder and then delete them every week.  I can hardly type I am so shocked.  Delete them.  She said that basically if you are on the cc list you are not important, the action is not yours and therefore you can delete at will.  I am reeling from that office-anarchy.  But, but, let’s examine the premise.  If you are cc’d for info (or politics – sad face) and someone else is dealing with the issue or debate then file it if it makes you anxious.  If you are like me file it in triplicate.  Otherwise, delete.

Another person said that email had had its day and that organisations had to move on and do instant messaging in project streams and get rid of email.  Whimper.  Really?  That sounded scary to me.  But, bear in mind, this is Radio 4 which is utter reasonableness.  There is no anarchy on Radio 4.  Well they might talk politely about anarchy as a concept and about how they saw some once but they can hardly even interrupt each other without sending a written apology.

I am going to have to listen to the podcast on this one.  Get me being modern with my podcast talk.  Oh yeah.  I am down with the Generation Crumblies.

Another thread which really took me to beyond my concept of comfortable was ignoring all of your emails.  Just ignore them all.  Once of the presenters said that they had thousands and thousands sitting unread in their Inbox.  That makes me sweat.  He said that when something important came up people would contact him about it in person.  I think my head would come right off with that approach.  However, I bet you are thinking that you know someone at work who appears to operate on that principle ……… 🙂

(I don’t love Farming Today or the shipping forecast.  I am not insane.  Although the shipping forecast reminds me of my childhood because my dad always listened to it for fish-bothering purposes.  Also I struggle with “Tweet of the Day” and that is not tweet as in twitter, its tweet as in bird.  And The Archers; I don’t listen to that.  Just as well because otherwise I could get caught up in the Rob/Helen debate and I believe that that is a bit like talking about Brexit – it is a hot topic.  Apart from that, I love Radio 4.)

Back to deleting all of my emails 🙂


2 thoughts on “Work-life balance: Susan on Radio 4, aerial yoga & deleting emails”

  1. Thanks for your article Susan, you have an engaging way of writing!

    I read recently that staff at the Huffington Post are encouraged to state in in their out-of-offices that emails will be deleted while the individual is on holiday (vacation) and to send it again on their return if it is important.

    This concept both delights and horrifies me, but wouldn’t it be great to return from leave to an empty inbox?!

    PS I too love Radio 4 – it’s definitely a Generational thing! – and I love the Archers 🙂

  2. Thanks Jo ! I must admit, I am a bit tempted by The Archers. A bit. Scarily, I remember when my mum listened to it Shula was a rebellious teenager ! 😮


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