Effective Email Communication in the Workplace

Email communication is the most widely used forms of communication within the workplace, so it’s important to stop and review your emailing style to see if it’s driving the results you need.

First and foremost, ensure you are keeping within the guidelines to appropriate email communication in the workplace. Once you’ve mastered that, learn how to write effective emails that are clear, easy to understand, and most importantly – drives action.

1. Email in the same way you’d speak

.…to your professional colleagues, not your best mate.Although you should always remain professional in emails, using sophisticated words or long sentences is not going to help get the point across any quicker or easier. However, keeping your email simple and concise will. In addition, emailing in the same way you’d speak to that person helps build a relationship when it’s more personable and pleasant to read.

Bad example:
Dear John
Further to our discussion, please find attached the file you have requested. I trust you will find the content informative and valuable in making a decision with regards to the next steps required in this process.
Kindest regardsSally

Good example:
Hi John
Great to speak with you earlier. I’ve attached the file here as discussed and I hope it helps in the decision making process.

2. Get to the point. And keep it separate.

People receive hundreds of emails each week, which essentially means your email is competing for the attention of the recipient.  Unfortunately this also means that many people read their emails very quickly (ie. skim read!) and may miss important points if it’s too long or unclear. Get to the point and do it fast!  Keep your points separate so that it’s easy to follow (dot points are your best friend); and if there’s a completely unrelated topic you also need to discuss to the same person, do it in a SEPARATE email.

3. Clearly communicate the action required.

In most cases the email you’re sending requires action from the recipient, so it’s vital this is made crystal clear for the recipient.  They shouldn’t have to read your email twice to work out what it is you need from them. Use single, stand-alone sentences to make your request for action stand-out. Incorporate it into your subject line. People are more likely to open an email sooner if they can see that it requires action from them.

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