A little less conversation…

Business Operations

I am a keen networker, not only does it give me an opportunity to promote Virtual Angels, but it also gives me – and the other people in the group – an opportunity to talk about business challenges, strategies and ideas that I wouldn’t necessarily be comfortable talking about with family and friends. I feel energized talking to like-minded individuals and it often boosts my excitement about the business.

At a recent event, I invited the group to think about and share their biggest admin problem. One of the ladies spoke to me and said she found it frustrating when her emails grouped together. I immediately understood her frustration – she was referring to the way that email programs are now designed to group emails in conversations, normally as a default setting. For me, this is counter-intuitive to the way I manage my inbox: I manage actions through my inbox – if an email is in my inbox it needs an immediate action. If the number of emails in my inbox exceeds the number of emails I can view on my screen, well that for me is a cause for stress! When a program groups the emails in conversations, I find it hard to work out what I have outstanding and what is relevant to my current tasks and it increases the number of emails in my inbox.

It’s an easy problem to solve, so I thought I’d share it… most email programs will have an option to turn off email conversations in the settings. Here are a few of the most common:

Outlook 2013

– Select the ‘view’ tab
– In the conversations group, clear the ‘show as conversations’ check box.

Outlook also gives you an option to select which emails you include in conversations. Still under the ‘view’ tab under ‘conversation settings’ you can deselect emails already filed in other folders to stop them appearing in the conversation.


Go to the settings option, ‘more mail settings’ and then turn off conversation view (or group by conversation).

Mail – Apple Mac/MacBook

Select the ‘view’ menu in the top toolbar, unselect group by conversation.

Apple – IPhone Mail

– Go to ‘settings’
– Select ‘mail, contacts, calendars’
– Scroll down to the mail options and move the ‘organise by thread’ option so that it’s no longer green


– Click ‘view’
– Select ‘sort by’
– Click ‘unthreaded’


– Click on the gear in the top right
– Select Settings
– Scroll down to the conversation view (still under the general tab)
– Choose conversation view off.
– Click on save changes at the bottom of the page.


  1. This is a really useful blog post Holly. It is something that has been really annoying me on my emails and I have now managed to solve the issue. Hopefully that will reduce my stress this summer!!!!

    • That’s excellent news! Glad to be of help. 🙂

  2. Holly
    You are still an angel! This has ben driving me crazy and I didn’t know you could just turn it off!

    • Thanks Mr B! Glad you found it helpful. 🙂


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