You may not think of email as having such power, but just as a great email can bring in the business—so these email mistakes can drive customers away and ruin your reputation. And pretty quickly too, if they’re repeated on a consistent basis. What business technology can do for you can be rapidly undone if you or your employees ignore these four simple rules of email etiquette:
- Always use proper spelling and grammar
You would be surprised at the amount of emails that get sent with misspellings, typos and poor grammar. Now, not everyone is a great writer, but there is a fundamental professional standard you should meet that involves using spell-check on every single business email you write. Send enough poorly written emails and the unspoken message you are sending your customers is that you are unprofessional, you don’t care about details, you’re not a quality company—or worse, you’re not even legit. Spelling matters!
- Be careful who you CC
We all use group email to keep the team looped in. But this practice can go horribly wrong when you hit the reply button carelessly. If you’re not alert, you may “reply all” when in fact you don’t want specific team members to receive the email. Or how about forwarding or replying and you’ve written something negative about someone on the email thread? Get out of the habit of thoughtlessly hitting “reply all”—and make it your habit to select recipients one by one every time before you hit “send.” (And, p.s. it is a good practice to NEVER write a negative email. They never disappear and may end up being forwarded and causing harm.)
- Don’t be in a hurry when emailing
Emails written in a hurry are obvious to the recipient. Some of the things that can go wrong with them are: unfinished emails sent, typos, incorrect information. Then you’re forced to send an awkward follow-up email where you have to explain your mistake. Very unprofessional! Moral: Slow down and give your full attention to each email you compose. People know when you’ve rushed through and it sends the message to them that they are unimportant to you. No matter how short the email or seemingly trivial, take your time to honor your recipient and get it right.
- Double-check the recipient before you hit “send”
This is another frequent blunder that happens when we get in a hurry and go on autopilot. The culprit is the autofill function. You think you’ve typed in someone’s name and unbeknownst to you, autofill has populated the “to” line with a different person of similar name or address from your contacts and you’ve hit send. This kind of error can be anywhere from embarrassing to downright dangerous, depending on the type of information you are sending out, e.g. confidential corporate info.
These rules of email etiquette are important enough to share with your employees as we all take on the role of representing our employers. Your reputation is at stake and no matter what you email or whom you email, take time, slow down, give it your best, and make sure it’s right before you hit send. If you have any tips to add to this list, comment below! For more ideas, contact Techno Advantage today!