The highlight for today's reading so far was a piece on time management, geared toward new faculty members, appearing in the SIGMOD Record (v32 no. 2, June 2003, by A. Ailamaki and J. Gehrke). I'm not a new faculty, but many of the suggestions are useful for anyone new to a professional position (faculty, researcher, etc.). The suggestion I thought most interesting was: read your e-mail only twice a day. This makes sense, in hindsight -- reading e-mail constantly quickly disrupts any attempt at a sane schedule. I disagree a bit with this, though -- e-mail is also valuable for low-latency small requests ("Corey, do you want to grab lunch in 20 minutes?"). But, thinking about how I read mail at work, I may try a similar approach: anything To: me directly I'll be notified about; ditto for a few lists I'm on. Anything else, though, I check only a few times a day. Okay, so I may miss the active progression of some discussions. But, if it means I'm less distracted, that's great.
The article had some other suggestions that I wouldn't have thought of myself (f'ex, don't surf online for airfare for travel -- have your admin do this; ditto even for printing papers or making copies). A good read, which I'm going to bookmark and re-read again, sometime in the future, should I ever consider becoming a "new faculty" myself one day. 8)