Mostly every person works in an environment where communication is completed through email. Often times, an email is the first impression of a person or business. This article could have been named, “Stop Using These Words in Emails”, but what message does that give? You want to give the best first impression of yourself or your business always, so here are some strategies to avoid using negative verbiage.
Strong Subject Line
This is the most important part of an email to not include a negative tone. This is the first part of the email that is read and sets the reader’s attitude toward reading the email in it’s entirety or not reading it at all. Do not include words that can bring negative emotions, but words that makes a reader excited to dive into your email.
When replying to an email, there are many responses to be avoided. “Fine”, “hopefully”, “unfortunately”, “sorry”, and “no” are just a few examples. Put yourself in the shoes of the reader; would you enjoy receiving responses like this?
…should never be used in an email. If a situation is truly worth an apology, it should be expressed over the phone or in person. For everyone’s benefit, express solutions to the situation and what actions you will complete to fix it.
Do Not “Cancel” a Meeting
If you find yourself cancelling a meeting or event, do not use the word “cancel”. This word has a disappointing and defeated tone. Instead, use “postpone” or “reschedule”. Even though the effect is the same, this lets your reader down easier.
DON’T USE ALL CAPS! It appears to the reader that you are “screaming a message” at them. It appears aggressive and users do not respond to that.
Read the Email Out Loud
Speaking your emails out loud or to a friend will help you understand how your reader will interpret it. The negative words will pop out and you will know exactly what to edit. Plus, a good proofread never killed anybody.
Read about subject lines that get results here:
Have you ever had a major blunder because of email tone? Share your story below.