Thursday, August 21, 2014

Good E-mail Etiquette

When writing an email:

  • State the subject clearly and concisely in the subject line. This will help your reader understand the topic, focus on the subject, and prioritize his reading order. 
  • Use direct language and summarize. Most of the time emails are not meant to be fine letters or pieces of poetry, they are just tools to exchange information.
  • Use bullet points or bolded/underlined itemized lists or paragraph titles. This is especially useful if there are different items in your email and if answers/action is expected on them. 
  • The recipient in the To: line is the one who should act/respond. Others in the Cc: line are just informed and are not necessarily expected to reply. In case they do reply, they should ask themselves: “Is the content of my reply going to be of interest and useful to all of the original recipients?” If not, he/she should reply only to the original Sender who will then decide if the new information needs to be shared with everyone. This will prevent the need to delete all the subsequent replies from many recipients that we are not really interested in. 
  • When emailing the same message to groups of people, use the Bcc: line for the addresses. This will prevent being included in multiple replies and it will also prevent your email address from ending up in spam lists that will flood your inbox.

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