The following is an article from Diane Markus' latest "Essential Business Etiquette Newsletter". Please visit her website at www.essentialbusinessetiquette.com . Her company offers training in business etiquette.
"If you have ever wondered if there was such a thing as proper email etiquette, the answer is yes, there is. Thanks to a new book by Paul Babicki, "Netiquette IQ, A Comprehensive Guide to Improve, Enhance and Add Power to Your Email", there are many things to consider when writing an email at work to coworkers, to your boss or to clients.
According to Mr. Babicki, writing a good email can benefit your company "by giving you an edge over others, empowers job-interview results and resumes, fosters additional letter writing quality and effectiveness, and offers a means to incorporate a sense of process to your communications." (page 5)
Writing a poor email can make you look unprofessional. If a client receives a poorly written email, he may wonder what else you cannot do. It could also prevent you from getting promoted. Writing a proper email is just as important as writing a proper business letter.
The majority of emails sent during the day are spam. Therefore you should open any email with great caution. Your office should have a system that will find most email spam. It is impossible to find 100% of spam. When you do find it, be sure to report it.
One thing to avoid, says Mr. Babicki, is any kind of abbreviations such as using the number 2 when you mean "two" or the letter "B" for the word" be". Spell out all words just like you would in a business letter. Emoticons should not be used in a business email. Be sure to spell check your business emails just as you would any business letter.
I learned that I was doing a few things wrong. One thing we should not do is to keep sending back and forth the same email over and over again when you are now talking about a new subject. Whenever you write back to someone and are now talking about a different subject, start a new email. Always write in complete sentences. Do not use "OK", or "I will" but write out "I will read that." (page 35).
Mr. Babicki tells readers that a poorly written email can cost a company thousands of dollars. When an email is written correctly, it reflects well on your company.
He encourages us to never begin a sentence with a number. The numbers one through ten should always be spelled out, and you should always hyphenate the numbers twenty-one to ninety-nine. (page 50)
There are several chapters that include advanced email etiquette. He even provides email etiquette for children and teens. Mr. Babicki includes a very useful number of appendixes in the back of the book.
If you want to be seen as writing a proper business email, I highly suggest that you purchase this book, the first of its kind on the market. This should be an item on you desk alongside your dictionary and thesaurus. Read this book cover to cover and then read it again.
Writing a proper can make a difference in how your coworkers, boss or clients perceive you. It can make your clients think that you know what you are doing and you are a professional. It is one tool that will help you find new clients and keep the ones you already have."
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