Write great emails

Adapted from an article by Melissa MacBeth, a Lead Manager at Microsoft.

What you should do!

  • Keep all messages short and to the point
  • If the message is really important or needs an immediate response, ring or text the person.
  • Don’t overuse High Importance!
  • Read your message before you push “Send”.
  • The “To” block is for the person who needs to action or respond to the message
  • The “Cc” line is to keep others informed.
  • Limit the number of recipients to those who need to read it. The Manager does not need to get every email.
  • Organise content from Most Important to Least.
  • State what you want in the Subject line eg Mark: Send the proposal back by Thursday or Marketing Team: Decision needed today.
  • Put action items on separate lines; same for questions needing answers.
  • Use a signature but keep it simple, short, professional and free of graphics.
  • If you are angry, do not send anything. Wait. Do something else. Relax.
  • Think carefully about Reply and Reply all. They are very different.

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