Technology allows even the most geographically spread out organizations to collaborate and communicate in very fast methods like the Email. Obsolete snail mail has taken the back seat and is very rarely used these days because of the advent of quick parcel services that offer 24-hour delivery systems. In a fast-paced environment, speed is a very important factor as the first one who reaches a realization normally takes the bigger share of the market or gains the competitive edge.
In communicating with your colleagues in the work environment, there are norms of conduct that must be adhered to. These standards provide for the maintenance of a professional atmosphere even in the Internet. Here are a few tips to enhance your Email writing skills and be a leader in corporate communications.
1. Be sure to use complete sentences. The English language in particular has evolved into what it is today because of the proven power of these organized sets of words. You may also use a free flowing style that uses phrases and dashes but taking on well-structured full sentences would be clearer altogether.
2. Think things through before you write. The advantage in electronic communication is that you have a lead-time to think and organize thoughts before sending the message. Slow down and think about the message that should come across. Remember that the clearer your message is, the better the communication will be.
3. Avoid using full caps. If you don’t want to be perceived by the recipient as a person shouting, screaming, or a wild employee, the caps lock is not for you.
4. Take advantage of punctuation marks. Be sure to take extra effort in knowing and re-learning how to lay a sentence out well enough to communicate better. A good grammar reference book is a great start. Don’t be fooled into thinking that an excessive use of dashes and ellipses will make an impression of your grammar prowess.
5. Avoid overuse. Spare the adverbs and adjectives if they’re just making the sentence look longer without adding much important thoughts to the statement. Emails are geared towards easy reading and to keep the flow of ideas in a very smooth way. Keep it simple. Avoid long words and sentences.
6. Lose the acronym bonanza. Every industry has a huge dictionary of acronyms. Not only do they become more confusing as they pile up, different departments might have different interpretations for acronyms. Case in point, CPR for medical offices is totally different for the Cost of Production Report made by accountants.
7. Spell check is your friend but don’t get all-too-reliant on its powers. Before pushing the send button, running over a spell check is a good idea but don’t stop there. As you might have encountered, it doesn’t always see all the items needing revision.
8. Start with a beginning and end with a close. While an email is not a formal letter, providing short but apt introductions and closing statements will make the mail more structured and professional.
9. Be CLEAR. Communicate ideas to the reader. Keep lasting records by maintaining hard copies. Give easy information that’s useful. Arrange points in a logical fashion and reinforce your ideas throughout the entire message.
10. Re-read your email before sending the message. By doing this, you will get a perspective on how the receiver will take the message. You may do some last minute edits to make sure you get the clarity of the message across in the mail.