Work Emails? 9 Email Etiquette TipsPosted: 10th of July 2015 by
Email may seem like second nature, or even old hat to many people entering the workplace. However, it is still an integral tool used by many businesses, and there is a good chance you will have to communicate with colleagues or client over email. It may seem simple, but it is important to use the right etiquette when using email at work – otherwise you could send the wrong impression. This is even easier if you are quickly replying to an email using your mobile as you are less likely to give your reply as much attention as when sat at your desk. Making sure your emails are professional will help you get on at work, or even find a new job if you are still looking, so here are a few tips to make sure you get things right before you click send:
- Be Prompt
With your work email, people will be expecting a prompt reply. Don’t sit on emails without responding quickly, even if you need to confirm you have seen their message and are looking into something for them. Ignoring or delaying emails can cause delays in other parts of the company, and the electronic paper-trail will clearly lead back to you!
- Stay Calm
It is too easy to send emotionally-charged emails quickly if you are angry or feel put-upon at work. Avoid doing this at all costs! Take time to calm down and never send anything that criticises anyone else at work – especially your boss! Even if you think you can trust the person you are replying to, once you press send it is totally out of your control. Never say anything you may regret later, or that you wouldn’t be happy with everyone else seeing - emails last forever and can be recalled!
- Stay Formal
Avoid any ‘text talk’ type abbreviations when sending work emails. This includes thins like ‘Gr8’ rather than ‘great,’ or ‘2 U’ instead of ‘to you.’ Spell everything out in full, as if you are sending a formal letter. This will ensure you always look professional in your dealings with others.
- Friendly & Polite?
Staying formal and calm doesn’t mean you have to be unfriendly or cold in your emails. Stay positive and friendly as much as possible in your emails. Wishing a colleague a good weekend as you sign off your email is perfectly fine, although use your discretion, it wouldn’t be right to do that if you have just told someone they were fired, for example!
- Pay Attention To The Subject Line
An inbox may be hit with hundreds or emails every day, so make sure your subject line is clear. It needs to reveal what the email will be about clearly so that your recipient knows what to expect when they open it. ‘Latest accounts reports attached’ is a better subject line than ‘All done!’ Keep it specific.
- Who Are You Writing For?
If you have regular correspondence with a certain colleague or client, try to match their email style. Stay formal if they do, or be more informal and relaxed in your email tone if they are too. Be careful not to let a more relaxed email style lead you into gossiping about colleagues or start using text-speak abbreviations in your emails. Maintain your standards!
- Signing Off
Use an automatic signature for your emails – including your name, position and some basic contact info (work phone, email). This saves you having to think about how to sign off your emails.
- Check Your Recipient(s)
It sounds simple, but make sure you send the email to the right person. You might have accidentally selected the wrong name from a contact list – especially if you are using your mobile. Just check before you send.
Being emailed as part of a group complicates matters, so make sure if you hit ‘reply to all,’ your message is actually relevant to all of the recipients. You might also generate a lot of unnecessary replies, while also making you look like an amateur.
- Read Before You Send
Just take a few moments to read your message before you send it. Does it say what you want it to, is the subject clear, and is the spelling OK?
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