- Slow Down.The point is to use email to increase productivity, not be the fastest to respond. Common courtesy is to respond within 24 hours.
- Be Professional.Yes, that joke your buddy sent you last night was a hoot, but you should never forward such communications to business contacts.
- Protect Your Friends. When sending a message to a group, do not disclose your recipient’s email addresses. Use the “bcc” (blind carbon copy) field for multiple addresses and place your own email address in the “To” field.
- Do Not Use “Forward to All” and “Reply to All” Functions.I have witnessed embarrassing moments of others (and recall my own painful “oops”) when messages intended only for the original sender, are, in fact, sent to everyone who may have been cc’d or even bcc’d on the original message or post. Best not to use either button at all. Ever.
- Do A Final Full Read of Each Email.With each email, always read through your message from start to finish before hitting “Send”. This last reading is crucial in catching any missing information or attachments and allows you to get a full understanding of the “tone” of your message.
- Formatting Counts.Every email message should contain proper formatting, punctuation, grammar and have a signature containing your name, email address and telephone number.
- Don’t Send Large Files.Sending large attachments may cause some inboxes to reach their size limit. If this happens, the recipient must log in and download or delete your message in order to receive any further emails from any source – almost guaranteeing they will not think kindly of you from that point forward. Use a service such as www.SendThisFile.com to transfer large files.
- Be Polite.Do not type in CAPITALS as it is considered shouting.
- Be Clear.Do not use acronyms or cryptic shorthand in your messages. Not only will the recipient not understand your message, it may make the recipient feel “stupid” for not being able to figure it out! Each message should contain enough information for the recipient to understand what you need or what they need to do in response to your communication.
- Leave The Subject Line Alone.When replying to messages, especially to groups and list servs, do not change the subject line. Many email applications allow a sort by subject, giving subscribers the ability to follow a particular discussion “thread”.
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