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Writing Office E-mails

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E-mails might have replaced the paper memo in the office, but this doesn’t mean that correct language use and letter etiquette should be forgotten as well. Here are some tips on what and what not to write in an office e-mail.

Use the correct format. This means including a header, footer, and title. Informal salutations that could be appropriate to colleagues are, “Hello” or “Hi.” You may close the e-mail with “Thanks” or “Regards.” For more formal recipients, you can use “Dear Mr.” and end with “Sincerely yours.” Don’t forget to include your name and position at the end. You may also add contact details. Never leave the subject box blank. Write there the appropriate subject.

Always use proper capitalizations, punctuations, and correct grammar when writing an e-mail. Never type in all caps because it is the virtual equivalent of screaming. This is considered to be very impolite. Check your spelling. Most e-mail clients have spell check in them. Use it if you must.

Never use your work e-mail for personal correspondences. Even if you are e-mailing a good friend who is also a colleague, if the content is personal, use your own e-mail account. Never include chit-chat in a professional mail even if it is only a one-liner. Mind your language. Work e-mails can be reviewed by the higher ups on very special cases, especially if it’s a legal one.

Check before clicking send
. See if you are e-mailing all the appropriate people. You might be sending confidential details to the wrong people.

E-mail clients have “out of office” options, wherein it sends an automatic reply to people who send you e-mails that you are out of the office and will not be able to check your inbox until so and so. Use this if you are taking a leave or out of town.


Categories: Work and Career, Writing


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