Sunday, May 11, 2014

Netiquette - !2 Basic Principals of Email Invitations - Via Netiquette IQ

Automated invitations

        There are a number of products that automate meeting invitations. These products also provide the capability to include attachments, messages, or other information. The products also have requests for providing acceptance, refusal, or deferring. Netiquette considerations should be practiced as though these are regular emails.

When to send email invitations

        The best times to send emails, in particular email invitations, are not likely to ever be universally agreed upon. Many people will agree that Tuesday and Thursday mornings between 7:30 and 8:30 a.m. are best. These times are likely to have the least amount of backup correspondences. Additionally, reaching “early birds” at their computers is likelier. Finally, these times will have fewer meetings, appointments, or events started. If someone is en route to work or their office, they will see arriving email via their phone[JL1] .

        If previous communications exist, one can make note as to when a responder has sent replies. The best procedure is to schedule these times to the sender with calendar reminders or software schedulers. For example, if a recipient has sent emails during evening hours, this would be prime time for attempting to connect. There are some users who are often online at work, late, early, weekends, and even holidays.

Responding to email invitations

        There are many important Netiquette basics to maintain in a reply to an email invitation. It should be emphasized that a prompt response is tantamount when replying to such an email, in particular when there are multiple attendees.

Some useful Netiquette tips

  1. If an offline meeting has been scheduled, it is best to follow up a meeting’s being scheduled by an immediate email. Requesting a confirmation is a necessity.
  2. The inviter should send a confirmation email the day before an appointment. If the appointment is in two weeks or more, a reminder should be sent every 7–10 business days
  3. If a meeting attendee is required to travel, this should be stated in a confirmation email with a cut–off date/time for cancellation.
  4. Confirmations should include the specifics of a meeting, not just a plain statement.
  5. Provide reasonable lead time in scheduling appointments, particularly for those with multiple attendees.
  6. Focus the time, date, and location to best accommodate everyone required to be there, or those who typically have less available time.
  7. If an appointment has high importance for any of the attendees, it is essential to state this clearly in all of the correspondence.
  8. If travel expense or extended effort is necessary, a cancellation deadline should be politely stated.
  9. In current times with fewer meetings occurring, it is financially important that all details and items be thoroughly and explicitly clear.

10.    Specify all items attendees should or are expected to bring.

11.    Items to show in all email appointments include the following:

                                    i.        Location with street address, floor, and room number

                                   ii.        Time (identify time zone) with day of the week, date

                                  iii.        Expected duration with hard stop times, if any

                                  iv.        Directions, maps or how to get them

                                   v.        Dress code

                                  vi.        Accessibility, parking

                                 vii.        A URL or attachment with directions

                                viii.        Location accessibility, including alternate phone numbers

12.  Send reminder messages. Include date and time in the subject field. Get to the point and provide a means of contact, similar to what one would do when making an appointment.

In addition to this blog, I have authored the premiere book on Netiquette, " Netiquette IQ - A Comprehensive Guide to Improve, Enhance and Add Power to Your Email". You can view my profile, reviews of the book and content excerpts at:

 If you would like to listen to experts in all aspects of Netiquette and communication, try my radio show on BlogtalkRadio  and an online newsletter via have established Netiquette discussion groups with Linkedin and  Yahoo I am also a member of the International Business Etiquette and Protocol Group and Minding Manners among others. I regularly consult for the Gerson Lehrman Group, a worldwide network of subject matter experts and I have been contributing to the blogs Everything Email and emailmonday . My work has appeared in numerous publications and I have presented to groups such as The Breakfast Club of NJ Rider University and  PSG of Mercer County, NJ.