Writing an email may seem to be a very easy and mundane task. One would think why learn how to write an email, it is just so easy. Just login to your email account, and compose a new mail and send it. No rocket science involved. However writing professional emails is a completely different thing. In the professional world when you are writing an email, you are representing yourself and your organization. There are some simple rules you must follow to make your correspondence look professional and proficient. Writing professional emails is not a difficult task at all but many people fail to do so thinking that there is no need to learn how to do it. Here lies their mistake.
In the age of texting and watsapp, it is becoming difficult to understand the difference between a casual text and writing professional emails. If you are mailing to a friend, you can be informal and write in whatever way you want but when you are writing professionally, it becomes incumbent to follow some rules and protocols.
Here we write some rules that you must follow in order to write impressive emails that would stand out in your office.
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4 Rules towards impressive emails
Before moving on to the body of the email, carefully fill up the fields which come before, at the top. First and foremost is the ‘To’ field where you have to enter the recipient’s email. The auto fill option is usually activated for this field and once you start typing the recipient’s name or email, auto fill options are displayed in the drop down menu. Many times, due to the auto fill, one ends up writing the wrong email. You assume you have clicked the right recipient but in fact it is someone else, so always double check whether you are sending the email to the right person or not.
Then there are the CC and BCC options. People usually do not use these field but they are very beneficial when you do not want people to know who else you have sent the email too. For example, if you are sending a same email to all the candidates for a job, use the BCC option to enter the email addresses so people do not know about the other candidates.
Then is the subject option. While writing a professional email writing a proper subject is very important. People get at least a hundred professional emails everyday according to a report published by the Radicati Group. A busy professional does not have time to go through all of them in detail. So subject attracts the reader to open up the email and look into it. If the email is especially important, write it in the subject as
Subject: “Important! Read Immediately!“
If the subject is blank, the recipient might delete the email without reading it, thinking that it is spam.
After looking into these prerequisites now let’s move on to the main body of the email.
Always begin with polite and courteous salutations. If it is someone superior to you in designation Dear Sir or Dear madam is a good way to start. If you do not know the gender of the recipient a Hello would suffice or you can write To Whom It May Concern depending on what is the designation of the person. After that, you can come to the point or add some more but very concise courtesy, like hoping you are well or good morning. If the person has done some favor for you it is good to thank them before the main subject. But be quick and after being nice move on to the main subject body.
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Writing professional emails
Now is the main body which is the main component while writing professional emails. The emails need to be short so there is no point in beating about the bush. Come to the main agenda and let your recipient know in clear and simple words why you have emailed them. Here there are some important points to take note of.
- Do not use any short forms like ‘u’ instead of you or ‘m’ instead of am. In a professional environment the email have to be short but short forms are not appreciated.
- No slang words or stuff like LOL, ROFL. You are writing professional emails and you have to be serious about your work. Using terms like these do not make you sound professional.
- Avoid using emojis, emoticons or animations. If you want to thank someone there is no need to add a sticker or a dreamy eyed emoji. Just write in plain words.
- Do not over do on interjections. We do it unconsciously. Consciously avoid doing this. Keep your full stops and exclamation marks under check. Write them once, and do not repeat many times like we usually do in text messages.
- Sometimes you have to mirror the writing style of the sender. If that is the case be polite and casual as the sender.
- Use grammar and spell checking tools. If they are not installed on your email text editor get them immediately. Small grammar mistakes give a very bad impression.
- We cannot stress enough on the use of proper punctuations. An email written in a good language with proper punctuation gives a very good impression of the sender and it somehow makes the reader to take it more seriously than other unpunctuated emails.
- If you have to write a little long email, it is best to highlight the important points that require immediate action or attention. For example, here is how you stress on a point.
In the end never forget to write your name, workplace and contact number. This is especially useful if you are not sure whether the person you are writing to, remembers you or not. If you have a doubt, bold your ending signature. If the email was long, before ending give a one line reminder of the main task. Before your signature, write words like Regards, or Best regards.
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Following these simple rules can make a huge difference in your professional correspondence. Soon the people will start recognizing you for your unique and efficient style
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