Late last year I also stumbled on the email sorting technique mentioned in the OfficeRocker’s post. I started using Categories on emails related to my Autodesk University trip and changed my Inbox to show grouped by category. I then wondered why I don't do the same for all emails!
I've adopted it at home as use Office 2007 which has enhanced category tools. The odd thing is it took so long! I already make extensive use of Categories for my Tasks (MindManager assigns them then linked to Outlook) and Contacts.
The huge advantage over folders is one item can belong to several categories. It’s one reason I’d like to see “tag” based storage rather than folders at the operating system level. Sadly I’m stuck on Office 2003 at work so still tend to use date sorting in that Inbox.
The post on OfficeRocker! has details and tips on setting up & using the system.
Goodness knows its about time. I get between 50 and 200 emails a day depending on what's going on. It's dropped a lot since instant messaging really took off. I thought I had tried every possible way of working with email and had arrived at the best system for me but then I kind of stumbled on a new approach and it's really working…
UPDATE 06-01-2008: I got an email related to this post from a reader in the U.K. regarding some Kiwi made software that assists with using, organising and sharing Outlook Categories. I’d not heard of it before and will be trying it!
Saw your blog about outlook categories…… you may know about this already…. but in case you don’t…. I use great add-on for categories (as well as the labels one) from your fellow countryman - http://www.software-solutions.co.nz/aladdins_co/alcoabout.asp I’m very impressed by the quality of his programming and the thought he has put into his products – gets used on a daily+ basis here J
Hope it helps.