- Be short, yet clearso readers know what you're writing about and can find your note later.
- Indicate urgency and whether action is required. For example: "Cust Sat Issue-Need response today"
Body of Note:
- State the objective of your message in the first line: "This is to ask for your approval....."; "This is to invite you..."; etc.. This lets the recipient know right away what action is needed.
- Be concise.
- Choose words carefully.
- Write with the audience in mind.
- Limit your message to one subject.
- Limit your message to 25 lines... about one computer screen.
- Use bulleted lists when appropriate.
- Use "sections" ("twisties") where appropriate in longer notes.
- Keep paragraphs short.
- Add a blank line between paragraphs.
- Use bold type to highlight main points.
- Don’t SHOUT ... using ALL CAPITAL LETTERS is considered shouting.
- Don’t send blanket messages to everyone on a distribution list if only 3 or 4 people need the information.
- The recipient who needs to take action, should be directly addressed in the TO field and the greeting/opening of the note.
- Recipients copied (CC'd) on a note should not be expected to take action. It's FYI only.
- When marking e-mail urgent, ask yourself the question "Is urgent action really required by the recipient?" Only send urgent e-mail if the answer is yes.
- Don’t forward large-file attachments unless you know the recipient wants or needs them. (Use Connections to share large files).
- Don’t forward trails of notes unless it's necessary to make sense of your note.
- Don’t use e-mail to address "emotional" topics. Speak directly.
- Ensure that you have a footer on your e-mails -- your name and contact details such as your phone number.
- People will learn about you from the e-mail you send. Ensure your communication is courteous and professional.
- Get to know the communication style of those with whom you communicate frequently. How often do they access their e-mails? Do they prefer urgent messages by e-mail, instant message or phone?