5 Favorite Tips for More Effective Emails
Dr. Jim Harris wrote an article detailing seven favorite tips to increase employee productivity. Tip number two discussed one-point emails, or sending brief emails that address only one issue. But there is so much more to email than just brevity. Knowing how to manage your inbox and write effective emails are key components to having a more productive workday.
Email is a vital tool in business today; those of us who have been in business for more than twenty years wonder what we ever did without it. Here are a few pointers for writing more effective emails, in a less time consuming way.
#1 Keep It Brief
One-point emails will help you get your point across more quickly and your recipient will be grateful for not having to slog through a lot of incidental information to get to the crucial information.
#2 Watch Your Tone
One of the downsides of email is that you can’t really read someone’s tone. It is a medium that is ripe with potential misinterpretation. For more effective emails, be aware of what you are saying, as well as how you are saying it, so that nothing can be misconstrued by your recipient.
#3 Email Is Permanent
Once you’ve sent an email it’s out of your hands. Therefore, beware of sending replies in the heat of the moment; if a client or customer has sent you a rather disgruntled email full of a litany of complaints, stay calm and professional. Address the issues without resorting to personal attacks or lame excuses. Once you’ve hit “send”, it is irretrievable. You don’t want to lose a client over a fit.
#4 Grammar and Spelling Are Important
While not everyone has the best writing ability, there are plenty of good manuals in circulation addressing grammar, and the dictionary is always available to help with spell checking. Do not always count on your computers’ spelling or grammar check to fix your mistakes; a machine is not fool proof. Effective emails are always carefully proofread before the “send” button is hit.
#5 Watch the Clock
Many people are serial email checkers. Every time the notification bell rings they feel compelled to check the message. A more productive use of time is to only check email at set points during the day. For example, first thing in the morning, immediately after lunch and right before you go home for the day are all good times to do an email scan. If the temptation proves too much for you, shut down your email and only open it at your set times. This tip will help keep you on track and your productivity will skyrocket.
Keeping these points in mind will help you send more constructive, well written, and effective emails. Using email as a business tool can greatly increase your productivity. Just be sure you are using it properly and that you are controlling your email usage, as opposed to it controlling you.