If you think that in office, you are judged merely on the basis of your appearance, you are absolutely wrong! There are various criteria to judge an employee. Email etiquette is one of them. Bad email manners may sabotage your personal and professional reputation.
Here are some guidelines to make your email communication perfect.
1. Mention the Subject
The subject line of your email expresses the important point, which you want to convey. So, it should be effective. You should incorporate a date in your subject line, if the message in the mail is time sensitive, for example, “Meeting in Conference Room on Friday, Dec 28.”
2. Make Your E-mail Message Crisp
Your email message should be to the point and brief. Perceive your email from the recipient’s viewpoint. Limit your words to 500 or less. If the receiver is using iPhone or Blackberry to check the email, it’s difficult for her/him to read long paragraphs.
3. Zip It!
If you have to send more than 2 documents or large files via email, zip them in a single file. It will make sure that your boss or colleague would not miss downloading any important file.
4. Reply Soon
Always respond to emails promptly, particularly the ones exclusively addressed to you. Remember, the sender is still waiting for your reply. If you are not able to answer back right away, at least email back to confirm your receipt and give a timeframe within which, the sender can look forward to your response.
5. Check Before Sending
Before hitting the ‘Send’, do a spell check. An email with grammatical errors and spelling mistakes reveals your non-serious attitude. Never express your distress in your message; otherwise, you will have to regret, once you press the ‘Send’ button.
6. Begin with Greetings and Close with Sign-offs
Don’t just commence with your text, and don’t end without a gracious signature. You can address your readers as follows:
Dear Professor Heda,
Hello Ms. Ruchi,
If the email is addressed to a diverse group, begin as follows:
Dear team members,
To whom it may concern,
You can sign-off in the following manner:
Thanks & Regards,
7. Minimize the Use of “Reply All”
In order to prevent your message from becoming public, avoid the use of ‘Reply All’ button. If you received a message that has been forwarded especially to you, reply back to the sender only, instead of replying to all. If you get an email marked to many people asking the status on certain project, make sure that you reply to all, as each person working on that project would want to know it.
8. Don’t Insert Acronyms
You can insert abbreviations in the message meant for your friends, but, using acronyms in professional messages make you look juvenile.
9. Avoid Sharing Personal Information through Office Emails
Sharing personal information over office emails is against the company rules. It may also leak out your privacy. A backup copy of your e-mail is always stockpiled on a server, even when you have deleted the message, and it can easily be got back by the interested parties.
10. Use Appropriate Formatting
Avoid writing the whole message either in uppercase or in lowercase. Use capital letters, where required. Employ standard font size. Don’t use multiple font colors.