Friday, March 8, 2013

FIve (or ten) of the most difficult things to avoid doing in email

Most advice on email Netiquette, including this blog at times, focuses on things which are most apparent. This includes grammar, punctuation, spelling, etc.

It has been stated previously in this blog and addressed more thoroughly in my forthcoming book, "NetiquetteIQ - A Comprehensive Guide to Improve, Enhance and Add Power to Your Email" that much of good Netiquette involves establishing good habits and processes. There are many more subtle items which you should be mindful of to assist you in having advanced email skills.

The following are five items which many senders, even those with high Netiquette skills, find difficulty in doing or often overlook. Here are a first round of five, in no predetermined order.

1. Using I to begin an email, paragraph or overusing this pronoun in a message

2. Utilizing too many incomplete or shortened sentences

3. Inavertently having imperatives or requests which can be misunderstood as commands

4. Presuming shortened names are appropriate

5. Giving complete dates, including day, date and month

Try this simple exercise!

To see if you are prone or tend to overlook the above five items, do the following. Take the next ten or twenty emails of more than three or four paragraphs which you compose and scan them for the items mentioned. Look for items such as let's, you must (as commands) or a shortened date. Some of the others are more obvious. Some senders, myself included, will find that not using I to begin an email or paragraph can be a challange.

If you do find you have made some of these mistakes, correct them and read the message back. Odds are, an improvement in the overall tone will be noticed.

The next blog will have another five " difficult things to avoid".

Once again, all comments and suggestions are welcome.

Please check our website regularly for the release of my book and our email testing product. The site is currently under contruction.

Here's to good email writing!

Paul Babicki