Your Success Thought on "E-Mail Etiquette"
May 4, 2005

E-Mail, designed for efficient and immediate communication, has been abused across the board. While this affects us all, we focus on SPAM instead of what is key-the effectiveness of our own communication. Let's investigate how we can improve electronic communication from both time management and etiquette view points.

Since the topic of e-mail comes up in all of my 'Time Management' workshops, I'll provide suggestions for 'time management' and leave the 'etiquette' to the expert-Peggy Post from The Etiquette Advantage in Business.

Time Management Saving E-Mail:

  • Use the carbon copy button sparingly. This is the number one complaint I hear. Only 'cc' those who absolutely need to know, not the entire organization.
  • Send only one topic per each e-mail. It's easier for the reader to respond to short e-mails than to lengthy ones that take more time and consideration.
  • State your purpose clearly in the subject line. For example, is this information only or is action needed?
  • Be clear, succinct and use full sentences. If your recipient needs time to decipher your abbreviations chances are high that they'll become irritated.
  • Cut the jokes and lengthy stories that few people have the time to read. They'll treat your e-mails with more respect if there are fewer of them to read.

Etiquette Suggestions:

  • Be cautious not to offend your recipient with tone or caps. Know that they cannot hear your voice or see your face to get your true meaning.
  • Use more traditional forms of communication such as a letter or phone call for confidential matters. Be considerate of confidential materials you receive.
  • If you send a confidential e-mail in error, call the recipient to ask him to delete it before reading. If you've accidentally sent a 'memo all' out, transmit a blanket apology and say you hope no one has been offended or angered.
  • Know that e-mail is informal communication. The more serious the message, the less appropriate e-mail becomes as a medium.
  • Watch your language, e-mail is no excuse for misspellings and grammatical errors. Use spell check and know how to compose a successful correspondence.

Even though your recipients cannot see you in person your e-mail correspondence speaks volumes about you. Take your e-mails to the next level this week with the above suggestions. You'll not only elevate your own communication but set an example for others.

Enjoy your discoveries and have a splendid week.

Ann Golden Eglé, PCC, CPCC
Executive Coach & President
Golden Visions Success Coaching, LLC

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Permission is granted to either reproduce copy or distribute "Your Success Thought for the Week of May 4, 2005" so long as this copyright notice and full information about contacting the author is attached. The author is Ann Golden Eglé, Golden Visions Success Coaching, LLC, 541.385.8887, 1972 NE 3rd St, Suite # 307 Bend, Oregon 97701, www.GVSuccess.com

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