As email is the most common way of non-verbal communication so its very important to keep on mind that whether you write an email to your best friend or a potential employer, a certain level of protocol must be maintained. Avoid being so casual that you neglect the appearance of your email. A page that is filled with mistakes can be very off-putting to readers if they are used to a good level of English.
- Forgetting to use a greeting or closing
Always open with a greeting when beginning a conversation. Otherwise, your email will come off as terse and demanding.
- Being too formal
Your email opening should always reflect your relationship with that person. While formality remains crucial to professionalism, if you’re emailing a client you call by their first name in person, don’t revert to an honorific, such as Mr. or Mrs., in the email.
- Becoming too informal too quickly
Always start a conversation politely and formally, and follow the other person’s lead. While an email thread can swiftly become short and friendly, starting off too informally – for example, saying “Hey Neha” instead of “Hello Ms. Chopra” to a new contact – may seem disrespectful.
- Saying “to whom it may concern”
It shows you haven’t done your homework. It’s so easy to find out who you need to talk to if you put in a little effort. Taking the time to include a name will make your email feel more personal and less generic. If you can’t find a specific name, try something like “To the consumer affairs department” or “Dear hiring manager.”
- Forgetting to change the subject line
Most people forget about the subject line, one of the most important parts of any work email. Every time you begin discussing a new topic, change the subject line of your email thread to make your conversations easy to locate in the future.
- Not paying attention to detail
Small details speak volumes in email. Always be sure to spell names correctly and double check for typos. Additionally, never put names in all lowercase or all caps either. It makes it look as though you didn’t care enough to properly format their name.
- Including too many personal details
No one wants to read through more than they need to, so keep emails concise and leave out personal details. Save your personal updates for another time.
- Saying something over email that should be done face-to-face
Some things, such as offering criticism, can’t be said over email without creating a misunderstanding. Learn to recognize these situations, and pick up the phone or walk over instead of sending an email.
- Using emojis or abbreviations
Emojis and abbreviations are generally unprofessional in business emails. Leave out the smiley faces and LOLs, and be sure to spell out words like “appointment” instead of writing “appt” if you’re writing to your boss or a client, which shows that you’re taking adequate time to respond to their email instead of using quick shortcuts.