I really enjoyed this post about Scott Hanselman's methods for productivity. It's kind of like the CliffsNotes of GTD. But, as with any "tricks", the ideas are more clever than practical for some environments:
Changing how emails are displayed in your inbox, Hanselman says, will "fundamentally change how you think about email." The change: set up a folder for emails that you're Cc'd on and a folder for emails that come directly to you. The emails automatically filtered to the "CC" folder, Hanselman says, are not important.
That sounds smart. But my experience in a large company is that only about 60% of the people I interact with know how to use email and calendars1. Many will reply-all to an old message and haphazardly add people to the CC line that are primary recipients. Sure, you could say "well then they just need to learn these lessons the hard way, by being ignored." But I'd say: "sometimes principles about email are less valuable than a good paycheck."
That's not a critical evaluation. Why expect anyone to be good at email when the tools are awful? ↩