Did you know that on average at least 30 % of our time at work is spent on checking, reading & replying emails?
Use of email has been around us for a long time and even though many new methods of communication have popped up, email remains the king of business communication.
There is no one correct way of writing an email, writing styles differ from person to person. But writing an effective email is extremely useful. It will save both the sender’s & recipient’s time, plus you’re more likely to get a response sooner.
Try these tips to write an effective email.
Be clear about your purpose
The last thing you want is to spend time writing an email and have your reader wonder what is expected from it. Ask yourself “what do you want the reader to do after reading it”, and write accordingly.
Meaningful subject line
Keep in mind, people receive a lot of emails and mostly they skim through them. If you want your email to be read and replied quickly, be sure to have a subject line which explains what the mail contains.
Be short & direct
I enjoy reading long emails on my personal account from my friends and family. They are full of descriptions and friendly warm-ups, but only when I am free and on my couch!
At work, when I come across a long email or where the message is not clear in the first paragraph, I flag it and move on to the next one. Simply because it requires more of my time, I will definitely get onto it, but not right away.
Look at the below exchange of emails between the CEOs of Facebook & Snapchat. Short & direct.
Finally, Keep it simple
Are you familiar with the KISS principle? “KISS is an acronym for “Keep it simple, stupid”. The acronym was coined by an engineer in the U.S. Navy in 1960. The KISS principle states that most systems work best if they are kept simple rather than made complicated”.
Explain your message in simple terms, there is no need to show off your vocabulary or technical skills. Whether it’s your staff or customers, they will appreciate it when the language is simple to understand.
I hope you found the above tips useful and will apply them the next time you write. Keep in mind, everyone’s time is valuable, most importantly your reader’s. Also, if you work in a small office such as mine, hop over to your colleague and talk to him or her in person than emailing. Sometimes a simple conversation can save you from an exchange of emails 🙂