Brevity, Clarity Valued In Executive E-Mail

Jan. 13, 2005
Executives get an average of 36 e-mails each day, shows a recent OfficeTeam poll -- and many rely on administrative staff to prioritize and direct those messages. To ensure your message will get prompt attention, follow these tips from OfficeTeam ...

Executives get an average of 36 e-mails each day, shows a recent OfficeTeam poll -- and many rely on administrative staff to prioritize and direct those messages. To ensure your message will get prompt attention, follow these tips from OfficeTeam executive director Diane Domeyer:

  • Think before writing. Knowing your ultimate goal will help clarify your message.
  • Keep it short. The more succinct, the more likely a prompt reply.
  • Use the subject line to your advantage. Generic subject terms don't describe contents or time sensitivity, so it may delay response.
  • Be considerate; use "please" and "thank you" even in brief messages.
  • Include an action step, or the message could be misinterpreted as an FYI. Clearly outline expected type of reply and deadline.
  • Keep it simple; each message should have only one piece of information or action item.
  • Don't include confidential information; e-mail can be forwarded to unintended recipients.
  • Proofread. Use the business style you would in any written materials; check for grammatical and typing errors. OfficeTeam offers job search and staffing services.
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