11 Tips for Effective E-mail Communication

In today’s business practices, e-mail is the primary communication tool. It is used for many reasons such as contacting friends, communicating with professors, and applying for jobs. However, its widespread use has introduced new challenges. Ensure your e-mails stand apart from “spam” and effectively get your message across by following Sue Biedermann and Donna Olson’s, authors of Introduction to Health Information Management, e-mail communication tips:

  • Do not put anything in an e-mail that couldn’t be published on the front page of a newspaper.
  • Keep the tone positive.
  • Start and end each e-mail message with a courteous greeting and closing.
  • Never type in ALL CAPS. It is considered YELLING, and it’s rude. Repeated punctuation marks (!!!, ???) are also considered rude.
  • Keep e-mail professional, and don’t include jokes or innuendos.
  • Use short paragraphs.
  • Always proofread your e-mails before clicking “send”, because spell-check does not always catch every spelling and grammatical error.
  • Avoid using slang.
  • Unless specifically requested, do not “reply all”. Reply only to the sender.
  • Always acknowledge the receipt of an e-mail in a timely manner, even if no response is expected. If you are unable to provide the requested information immediately, let the sender know when he or she may expect a reply.
  • If you do not receive a response to your e-mail right away, do not assume that the recipient is ignoring the message. There are many reasons the intended recipient may not have responded to the message. Follow-up with a phone call to determine whether the e-mail was received.

With an average office worker receiving around 80 e-mails each day, keep these tips in mind to effectively communicate with your colleagues and students.

What additional tips can you add? Add your comments below.

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