E-mail Etiquette Sending Email
Who to send to:
Blind Carbon Copies: List the recipients in the BCC field - when sending mail to large groups of people — particularly people who may not all know each other — type your own e-mail address in the To field. This prevents recipients from seeing (and having access to) the e-mail addresses of the other recipients.
Meetings: In Outlook, you can use the calendar to organize meetings within your department. Read instructions for setting up meetings in Outlook.
Guidelines Emotion: If the topic is emotional, you may want to choose a communication medium that allows more nonverbal cues than e-mail allows. You may need to speak with the person face to face.
Capitalization: Avoid typing in all capitals. In e-mail, using all caps is the equivalent of yelling. Save your use of caps for when you REALLY need to make a point. Do be polite. Don't reply to an e-mail message when angry, as you may regret it later. Once the message has been sent, you will not be able to recover it.
Humor, Religion and Politics: Remember that the various Laws of the land relating to written communication apply equally to e-mail messages, including the laws relating to defamation, copyright, obscenity, fraudulent misrepresentation, freedom of information, and wrongful discrimination. Also, keep in mind that all items listed in Section IV: Code of Conduct and Workplace Behavior in the Employee Handbook also apply to e-mail. As for humor--when in doubt, leave it out.
Concise and to the Point: Be clear and concise - A paragraph can be written that contains no errors in grammar or spelling, but makes little sense. Express yourself in a logical, concise, and direct manner. Make your e-mail brief, focused, and specific. Deliver the most information in the least space. Keep e-mail paragraphs short (three or four lines). Attach files if you need to send something longer, or if you need to use headings, bullets, tables, graphics, and other formats that will make your message easier to read and understand. When replying, keep messages brief and to the point. It is important to remember that some people receive hundreds of e-mail messages a day.
Write well: Use mixed case, capitals at the beginning of sentences, proper punctuation, etc. This goes back to what I said about typography. It is simply easier to read. Do not sacrifice spelling for speed. This can be acceptable in chat rooms, but there is no excuse in e-mail.
Spelling: Proof Read – Take a moment to proof read before you hit the Send button. After the E-mail has been sent, it’s gone! He who hesitates is not lost, check it again. Always review your message before pressing Send. Think "AAAA" and double check that your message contains: a correct Address, correct Attached files, suitable Attitude and tone, and a statement of the Action you want the recipient to take.
Use Grammar and Spell Checker: Most E-mail servers have these features and they should be used, because we know it takes way too much time to look at the Dictionary anymore. Nothing makes a worse impression than poor grammar and misspelled words. And that’s the truth!
Check the for Correct E-mail Address: These E-mail addresses with all their symbols and @ signs and dots and dashes can get pretty complicated. The address has to be perfect and correctly entered or the E-mail will never reach its intended destination.
Attachments: Be judicious when sending attachments - If you send an e-mail with an attachment larger than two megabytes (2MB), contact the recipient to let them know you’ve sent a large file. Never attach extremely large documents to your e-mail unless you check first with the recipient. Most often, people want to sit down, read their mail, and be out of there. However, that 2MB image keeps them from reading their mail quickly and painlessly.
Avoid sending large files or numerous files in one message: For those connected at standard modem speeds, large attachments can cause a frustrating system slowdown. When you have to send really large attachments, break them into multiple e-mail messages and send them separately to help distribute the load. You don't want to be the cause of a system crash. Ensure all attachments you send are small in size and don’t add attachments over 1MB.
Be sure to use a format that translates to your recipient's system: You can attach different types of files. For example, you can send a Microsoft Word, Excel, Visio, or several different types of graphic files. But if the person who is receiving the e-mail doesn’t have those types of application programs on their computer, they can’t open the e-mail attachment. Please call or e-mail the person receiving the e-mail and ask whether their computer has the software that can support the format type of the e-mail attachment.
E-mail Signatures: As a courtesy to your recipient; include your name at the bottom of the message.
Marking (Prioritizing): Do not overuse the high priority option !!! - We all know the story of the boy who cried wolf - If you overuse the high priority option, it will lose its impact when you really need it. Moreover, even if an e-mail has high priority, your message will come across as slightly aggressive if you flag it as 'high priority'.
Meaningful: Include the topic of your message in the subject area - Many people have very full in-boxes and make the decision about which messages to read and answer based on who sent the message and what the subject is. The subject area can also be indispensable when a recipient is searching folders for a filed message. If you are replying to a message but are changing the subject of the conversation, change the subject too - or better still, start a new message altogether. The subject is usually the easiest way to follow the thread of a conversation, so changing the conversation without changing the subject can be confusing and can make filing difficult.