Working within a fast-paced environment requires next-level inbox organization. All emails require a read, some are actionable items, some are urgent. If you’re receiving hundreds of emails each day, how do you set up a priority system to catch the messages that need quick response?

At GMD, we use Google Workspace (formerly G Suite). I have an inbox set up which uses a tagging system based on subject lines, sender source and filtering. This creates a triage of incoming emails before I’ve read them, adding actionable to the top of the inbox.  

To do this, you create labels. Labels act like folders in other email clients but with a label, you can tag a single email multiple ways depending on its context. You can also create sub-labels, nesting one within another. For instance, I have a label called Clients; underneath, sub-labels by client name.


Here are the labels I use as a baseline:

!/ for immediacy

A/ Admin

C/ Clients

P/ Products

R/ Reference

Z/ Archive


You might create the same sub-label for different applications. For example, I could have a sub-label called Sponsored Content under the Product label when it refers to marketing collateral; under the Reference label when it refers to a conversation thread with a vendor (sub-labelled by Vendor); under the Admin label is it refers to something invoice-related (sub-labelled by Accounting).

This tagging system may seem onerous to set up but once in place, it pays dividends on the time you will save. I have a tagging feature set up so that all project related messages filter into the project section of my inbox and all discovery forms are tagged but also priority so I look at each one before filtering them in case they need response and attention.

If you use Gmail and are interested in learning more about how to tag your inbox, check out this how-to from Google.

If you use Outlook, this blog post has a visual walkthrough of setup included.

Happy organizing and wishing you much productivity with your newly recovered time!