Corporations can increase productivity by bringing efficiency and collaboration to email communication
Improving how people work in today’s organizations by abstracting collaboration practices and embedding them in email.
Paradigm of email in today's organizations is unstructured and out of control
We have moved from an industrial economy to a collaborative economy. Implications of a collaborative economy are that we always are working with others to fulfill outcomes, initiatives, and deliverables. We work in matrix organizations and work across lines of business to deliver more complex results.. The workforce is no longer in one building or even one location—the workforce is global.
Email has become the standard medium to communicate, for several reasons
1. It is completely ubiquitous
2. It provides an asynchronous collaboration environment
3. It records all agreements (including simple agreements, such as, “OK, I will send you the file by Wednesday”)
Too much of a good thing results in Email Overload!
Initiatives or outcomes not fulfilled in time, cost overruns, and major project delays, can happen if a few critical emails are missed in the overload. The workforce has to spend hours keeping on top of all email communications by organizing and flagging their inboxes.
As email was meant as a messaging system, there is no visibility into the agreements and tasks embedded in the email messages.
Since there are no guidelines or structure for communication, every email you receive is subject to interpretation. This is not necessarily a problem in one location, but in a global environment, where meaning is affected by culture and environment, much room for misinterpretation is left.
Collaboration tools, like virtual meetings have become a common phenomenon to bring people onto the same page or vision.
And yet the whole thing depends on email to operate. Imagine an unstructured messaging system which is responsible for the delivery of critical outcomes and initiatives!
Systems and processes run in the background of any corporate structure, such as finance, order management, supply chain etc. But most of the decision-making and coordination happens via this unstructured, inefficient means of communication called email.
What OrchestratorMail brings to communication is what SAP brought to Finance, Supply Chain etc. to corporations – structure, reliability, efficiency.
The OrchestratorMail application is a solution to manage the unstructured email mess, alleviate wasted energy, reduce misinterpretation and therefore increase efficiency and productivity.
OrchestratorMail is designed for people working with other people to deliver outcomes, fulfill initiatives and complete deliverables inside of some explicit or implicit agreement.
It enables co-workers to collaborate more effectively, for managers to manage multiple projects more easily, and for executives to have visibility into their initiatives. It gives a global workforce a common vocabulary to reduce misinterpretation and misunderstanding.
OrchestratorMail does not replace the existing email system. It layers on top of the email system, and has the same interface, so there is no learning curve.
OrchestratorMail is a server-based application and is email platform independent, and manages, organizes and tracks emails to their conclusion.
OrchestratorMail begins with the sender choosing the intention of the email – from Request, Offer, Question, Discuss, or Inform. Doing so already alerts the receiver as to what the purpose of the particular email is. Each type of conversation then has its own pathway to successful conclusion, which shows up as a set of buttons with predefined responses. Conversations that require a timely response propose a due date, which the receiver can accept or change.
OrchestratorMail conversations highlight the critical terms of agreement inside the body of the email, without reducing the room to express oneself freely. Whether simple or complex negotiations are involved, it is always clear what stage of the negotiation is happening and what are the next possible responses in the conversation.
With a common vocabulary for identifying the intention of the email (e.g. “Request) and a shared pathway for completion, OrchestratorMail reduces the chance for misunderstanding between people. It decreases the gap between intention and interpretation.
Furthermore, OrchestratorMail sends daily summaries of all open conversations (or agreements). One glance at the open conversation summary and you can see which agreements are late and which ones require a response from you today. You can also see the responses from others that you are waiting on. You can send nudges to prompt a response right from the summary.
It gives you complete visibility into the status of your projects, initiatives, and deliverables, and you can adjust the expectations of others with a few easy moves right from the summary.
Using OrchestratorMail alleviates the anxiety of missing critical emails and tasks, increases visibility into the health of the outcome or initiative, and the flexibility of making rapid changes and negotiation.
- Increases the efficiency of people working together
- Saves un-productive work of organizing and flagging emails
- Provides an objective view into the commitments and actions of people
- Increase the visibility and predictability of initiatives, programs and deliverables
- Increases accountability
- Encourages an environment of mutual trust and positive negotiations
- Start in small teams, and showcase the increase in productivity, and visibility that it gives a team
- Secure buyin from the Team, and establish it as a tool for increasing productivity andvisibility, and lessening anxiety over missed communications
- Enjoy the results!
Terry Winograd - for co-inventing Language Action Perspective with Fernando, but more than that being an excelent mentor and advisor to OrchestratorMail
Ken Brooks - for implementing OrchestratorMail at Cengage and being an incredible supporter and customer
Carolyn Miller - for implementing OrchestratorMail at CDI, and learning a new way to manage CDI