With so much technology at our fingertips, it can be too easy to slip into a casual communication style in the workplace. Abbreviations, one line responses, and replying from a cell phone are second nature. However, employers indicate that professional business communication is still a requirement for many organizations! Take a look at these tips for using E-mail at work and think twice before hitting that ‘send’ button!
- Do not use your employer’s e-mail address for anything other than work-related correspondence.
- Read e-mail carefully so that you can respond appropriately.
- Don’t send confidential material by e-mail.
- Use a subject line that reflects what your message is about.
- Don’t use abbreviations or text-message jargon (BTW, LOL, or smiley faces, and so forth) in your e-mail.
- Use a brief greeting as you might in a letter (Dear John, Good morning Mrs. Smith). Include a closing (Sincerely, Yours, Thanks).
- Use spell check and reread your message before sending.
- Respond to e-mail promptly.
- Use typefaces and colors that are appropriate to your workplace. Ask if your office has a style that you should follow.
- If you find you are e-mailing back and forth several times, pick up the phone to settle the issue.
- If you forward a message, remove the FW from the subject line.
- Change the subject line if the topic of the e-mail changes.
- Do not share other people’s e-mail addresses.
- Be careful using “reply all.” Consider whether it is necessary that everyone sees your reply.
- Do not forward other people’s messages without permission.
- Watch the tone of your e-mail. Remember, the person receiving the e-mail can’t see your body language.
Courtesy of the National Association of Colleges and Employers, copyright holder