Get your Emails to work for you – 4

Structure

Emails are simply an electronic memo. The rules of writing the old fashioned memo in terms of structure and language still apply:
Begin with an overview summary,
Continue with an explanatory body and
Finish with a summary/ request.

Etiquette also applies in terms of addressing, checking names and titles are correctly identified and spelled.
Proof reading becomes more important in emails. Spellchecker does not pick up typographical errors which make sense e.g. “form instead of for”, “now instead of own”, “he instead of the” and so on.

Writing

As with all written communications, emails should be constructed using good grammar, avoiding abbreviations and avoiding “SHOUTING” in the content of the email. Abbreviations and shouting can be irritating to the receiver; research has shown that CAPITALS ARE HARDER TO READ THAN LOWER CASE so we defeat the purpose of SHOUTING.

Subject Heading

When forwarding emails there needs to be a subject heading to allow the receiver to prioritise when to read it. “Re ” does not inform the receiver what you want to tell them.

Make the subject heading relevant to the content.

Liz Cassidy, founder of Third Sigma International is an author, Speaker, Trainer and Executive Coach dedicated to facilitating results in the businesses, professional and personal lives of her clients. For more information http://www.thirdsigma.com.au

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