Email etiquette is tricky. How do you know if you’re being annoying? When do you reply and when do you hit delete? Did that last exclamation mark make you sound overly enthusiastic?
As a student entering the workforce with little email experience, it can be hard to establish the dos and don’ts of emailing. To make it easier for you, this blog post contains simple email etiquette tips to help get you started.
It’s not a text; it’s an email. In order to keep a professional status with your colleagues and clients, you have to give business emails the time and consideration they deserve. Think of it more like a very small mini essay. Your email should contain an informative subject description, professional greeting, a clear point to the message and friendly closing. This will make the entire message feel much more complete, polished, and professional.
Keep it professional. Always use a professional sounding email address – firstname.lastname@example.org isn’t going to cut it in the office. Avoid abbreviations, write in full sentences, and keep the emojis or smiley faces to a minimum. You never know who your email may get forwarded to and you don’t want the CEO of your company or your client thinking you’re unprofessional.
Proofread, proofread, proofread. Before hitting send, check to make sure that what you have written makes sense. That means proper sentence structure, capitalization, and punctuation. This includes checking the recipient’s name – check this against their email address or their signature to ensure you have it right.
Tailor the email to the recipient. Consider who you are sending your email to, and how they will perceive it. For example, many managers will receive between 100 – 200 emails a day, and will not have time to decipher a confusing email or to piece together a conversation from a series of different emails. Factor this into your email; making it as clear and concise as possible.
Subject line. Want someone to read your email? Make sure it has a good subject line. This needs to be specific, so that your recipient knows at a glance what your message is about. Try to stick with fewer than 10 words. And no matter what – don’t skip the subject line – or you risk your email being lost in an overflowing inbox.
And finally, don’t worry about hitting the send button! In no time you will be an email whizz.