If you think your benign neglect of email isn’t hurting you, I hate to burst your bubble. This behavior could be holding you back more than you realize.
In one study, people who took two weeks to respond to an email, or didn’t respond at all, were evaluated more harshly, assigned more negative intentions and viewed as less credible than their responsive counterparts. According to writer Margaret Heffernan, “How you deal with email says something fundamental about how reliable you are.”
Put simply, if you don’t respond, people won’t trust you. When they don’t trust you, they won’t respect you. And when they don’t respect you, they’ll never see you as credible.
When there’s no ready explanation for it, email silence has been shown to harm relationships. Shockingly, many will take it personally if you blatantly ignore their emails. They wonder, Do I not matter enough to warrant a reply?