What do you con­sider to be good email eti­quette?

The Advertiser - Careers - - Front Page -

IT IS easy to feel that be­cause you are send­ing a mes­sage by email, it can be more in­for­mal than more tra­di­tional cor­re­spon­dence. That can be the case when con­vers­ing with friends and as­so­ciates but, for busi­ness cor­re­spon­dence, it pays to ap­ply the same rules as if writ­ing a let­ter. Use a for­mal email salu­ta­tion and sign off with ap­pro­pri­ate gram­mar and lan­guage.

Dou­ble-check busi­ness emails for er­rors in spell­ing, in­for­ma­tion and ad­dresses be­fore you send them. Send­ing an in­ap­pro­pri­ate mes­sage to a wrong ad­dress can be very em­bar­rass­ing. Don’t rely on re­tract­ing an email once it’s sent. IT’S not un­usual for many ex­pe­ri­enced se­nior pro­fes­sion­als to re­ceive 100 emails a day. Given this vol­ume, it’s im­por­tant to stick with key prin­ci­ples. Treat an email like a press re­lease. En­sure that you cover who, what, when, where and why to en­sure the reader has the con­text quickly. Keep it concise and the lan­guage pos­i­tive and neu­tral be­cause an email is in the public do­main. Don’t use cap­i­tal let­ters or overuse Cc or ‘‘ re­ply all’’. Not ev­ery­one has the time for opin­ions. If you are deal­ing with a com­plex is­sue, ask whether email is the best forum. Don’t be afraid to pick up the phone.

Mid-ca­reer KEL­LIE RIGG Gen­eral man­ager, HR So­lu­tions Rand­stad

EMAIL has be­come a pri­mary tool for busi­ness com­mu­ni­ca­tion but many fail to recog­nise the im­por­tance of us­ing it to com­mu­ni­cate ef­fec­tively to cre­ate a com­pet­i­tive edge. Spell­ing and gram­mar are just as im­por­tant. Don’t use text speak or rely on spell check. Dis­tinct para­graphs, head­ings and bul­let points help the reader un­der­stand key points. Avoid caps lock text as it can be in­ter­preted as an­gry or con­fronta­tional. Don’t send or re­ply to an email when an­gry. If you feel the need to com­pose the email, place it in your drafts box and re-read once you have calmed down.

Ex­pe­ri­enced TIM ROCHE Prac­tice leader, Right Man­age­ment Ca­reer Tran­si­tion The Ex­pert MICHELLE BENT­LEY Gen­eral man­ager, Don­ing­ton tran­si­tion and out­place­ment

EMAIL is a cru­cial, timely and im­por­tant com­mu­ni­ca­tion medium and can be used to good ef­fect. The sub­ject line should clearly iden­tify the topic to as­sist in pri­ori­tis­ing, fil­ing and fol­low­ing up. The in­for­ma­tion needs to be concise, clear and ac­cu­rate. Con­sider the reader – their role, time con­straints, ne­ces­sity or im­por­tance of in­for­ma­tion. For ex­am­ple, know when to email di­rectly, Cc or Bc and when to not email. The email should be­gin and end ap­pro­pri­ately – be­ware fa­mil­iar­ity in busi­ness emails. Re­mem­ber, once writ­ten, it is out there and can be found and iden­ti­fied.

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