I have heard creatives like Franklin McMahon advise to check your emails 2 times a day. If it is that urgent a phone call is in order. This is a Pretty good tip which I never can follow. But I am trying. When I do, I am way more productive in my day. If you set aside these two times then your contacts will know you are checking email; these are the times you check and they will think twice about sending you a bunch of small emails and maybe one big one. Also make sure to put a good subject in the subject line which is a small summary of the work email being sent. For example today I sent an email to a client and the subject said. “Logos” Why? Well the email was about comps for conference logo we are working on together!
It takes 64 seconds to regain your train of thought after an email interruption. People who check their email every 5 minutes spend 8.5 hours a workweek trying to recall what they were doing.