Week 11 – Email Etiquette

Today my class went over another part of the book and it focused on how to properly email a potential employer, customers, bosses and colleagues. Email is today considered one of the most important ways for people to communicate. Although it may seem simple to many, some how foolish mistakes are being made myself included. It’s the simple things in an email that can make or break an opportunity or even make someone seem uneducated. This section in the book is separated in two parts one called Email Etiquette: Avoid saying or doing the wrong thing and the second part is called Email Etiquette II: Still puzzling after all these years. 

Basically in this section it gives its readers ten top suggestions in order to avoid errors and to keep a professional image. 

1. Double- Check that you have selected the correct recipient. Many times we try to send an email fast and we may skip over an important detail such as selecting the proper recipient on the “To” line. Maybe it’s missing a letter, name spelled incorrectly or even selecting another name that may be very similar. Pay attention to this in order to avoid being embarrassed. 

2. Add the email address last.

This is something I’m not use to doing personally as I’m sure many others aren’t either. But now reading this section is makes a lot of sense why it’s a bad habit to do so. It’s a good precaution to delete the recipient address and insert it only when you are sure the message is ready to be sent. I have made the mistake of sending messages by accident without being able to proof read or finish a sentence. That makes the writer look illiterate. 

3. Choose a good subject line. This is the most important part in sending an email because it was what can make a person decided whether to open it or not. Choose one that lets the reader know it is addressing a business issue or addressing a concern. Such as Quick question on your presentation. 

4. Do not come across as sounding abrupt.

The book states it’s a good idea to read your messages out loud in order to hear if it sounds harsh. Sometimes messages can be misinterpreted by the words we may use. Also never use negative words such as failure or neglected and remember to be polite! We need to welcome opportunity with positivity. 

5. Use a salutation and a closing. Set a pleasant tone by using “Dear John” or “Hello Sally” and closing with “Regards” or “Thanks” followed by your name.

6. Make your message easy to read. You only have the reader attention for a couple of seconds. If you have a lengthy paragraph, you will lose there attention and interest. They don’t want to read a long message. Keep it short, simple and use bullets to set off points. 

7. Be cautious with humor. Sometimes what you may perceive as funny may come off the wrong way, especially in a message. When in doubt leave it out as the book states. 

8. Think twice before hitting “Reply all.” Double check and then check again! Make sure the recipients all need to receive the email. People will complain if they receive emails they don’t need. 

9. Use a signature block. Include your phone number and address where someone can contact you directly. Be professional, don’t use quotes under your name. 

10. Proofread every message. Mistakes will be made and they will be noticed. Proofread because you will be judged if you don’t.