For most of us, we are habitually in a rush to accomplish as much as possible while we are working. A strong work ethic is imperative. But do you use an equally thorough approach to reviewing your emails before clicking “send”? The following is a list of the top 10 do’s and don’ts of business emailing:
- Always proofread. Improper grammar and punctuation are not only unprofessional, but it can prove to be quite unappealing aesthetically. Be sure to review your email by being meticulous.
- Do not include humour in your email. Business emails are intended to be on-point and devoid of wit. The reader is most likely as busy as you are. Therefore, remaining on-topic is imperative.
- Do reply to your emails in an expeditious manner. If you find that you are engrossed in a project that requires your time and attention, you may opt to mark an email as “unread.” This will serve as a reminder to you that the content of the email has not yet been dealt with.
- Do not hit “reply all.” Does the finance department really need to know that you have made a request for vacation time? Of course not. Take the time to make sure that you are responding to only the sender when appropriate.
- Do see to it that the documents that you wish to include have been attached. Neglecting to include attachments can cause extreme embarrassment. You may opt to attach them to your email before you begin to include your text.
- Do ensure that your email is consistent with your subject line. If there are a multitude of issues that must be addressed with a co-worker, create a thread for each one. This approach is much easier on the eyes and can help avoid the possibility of creating confusion for both of you.
- Do not include personal business in your email correspondence. It is best to stay focused and keep private information to yourself; alternatively, speaking with the other person during a lunch break is more advisable for informal conversations.
- Do not send an email when you feel emotional. If you are not in a position to make important decisions such as what to include in an email, you may decide to save a draft. You can then return to the email when you have your thoughts in order.
- Do not use only capital letters. This is not professional as it assumes that there is an urgent matter that must be immediately resolved—or that you are angry. Use proper grammar at all times.
- Do not send emails in the middle of the night. Your manager needs time to unwind from a busy day, just as you do. You may decide that sending emails within a range of time that includes one hour before the workday begins and one hour after the workday ends is a more considerate course of action.
Ori Michael Belmont | Contributing Writer