Do You Think You Know Everything About Effective Email?

Writing Effective Email Messages

Hi Guys, this is my second article about a very basic communication tools that most of us are well aware of : EMAIL.

OK – so you have been using emails for years and so far you may think that your style of writing has never caused any issues. That’s fine. You can skip this article 🙂 However, if you are willing to spend just a little bit time to read, please go ahead and see if following information is useful !

Why do you need to care about How to Write an Effective Email?
Well, here’s an easy answer : Email messages illustrate your professionalism and would enhance your credibility.

Basic understanding : Email is one of the method to deliver of information, and it can be regarded as fast way to communicate as well. The word “fast” can be relative and subjective here, according to the importance level and priority.

That being said, If you need fast response from someone who may not be accessing email at that time, a quick phone call, or even a quick meeting at the person desk can be more productive.

When “Writing Email” as a way to communicate can be considered inappropriate:
1. When you are delivering bad news
2. When you’d like to share confidential information
3. When you are want to convey warnings and reprimands
4. When you absolutely need fast/immediate response
5. When you think that written format might be misunderstood

As a general rule, it is definitely necessary for you to read and consider email before sending. Here are the questions that you should be asking to yourself (and try to imprint it on your mind so that it becomes a reflex) :

1. Is the email easy to read? did you have to re-read any sentences to grasp their meaning?
2. Would you be annoyed or offended by the email message. Is the tone courteous? are you angry? Do not offend the intended reader.
3. Is the message too impersonal or too familiar.
4. Is it junk mail.
5. Make sure that spelling, punctuation, grammar are correct.
6. Make sure that the message is going only to the intended reader.
7. Include all the details your reader needs.
8. Avoid terminology that might cause confusion. Provide description as necessary.
9. Make the message as easy to read and understand as you possibly can.

Personally, when I need to write an important email (for example : to Customer, or Senior Management, to technical team, or to provide feedback to someone) – I really take my time in writing it. Develop a draft, and then re-read it. I will try to review the draft based on the above 9 questions and see if I can further improve my wording.

Hope this is useful 🙂

April 21, 2010

October 20, 2009

May 11, 2008

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