I communicate with my team through a combination of real-time messaging and email. Before I send a message, I try to ask myself “Do I need to interrupt them?”.

I say try because sometimes I forget to reflect on this point (sometimes because I DO need to interrupt them). Most of the time, the answer is “no” or “not now” (I asked my team when they are most productive and I try to guard those hours for them) but sometimes the answer is yes.

Depending on the answer to the question, I can work out if I should

  • fire off a quick message
  • send an email
  • add an item to a task list
  • or just wait. I know how annoying it can be to have the over eager colleague who has to share every idea, and I know I can fit that description to a tee. So I try to rein myself in so they can stay fully focused.

Of course, I’ve written this down as I just felt the pull to send a message and then realised, I can and should wait till the end of the day.

That’s at least one success for the day.