In a world ravaged by text messages and a perpetual shortage of time, it seems our email etiquette has run amuck! Today, let’s have some fun looking at email faux pas to make sure our next professional email is on point.
Back to basics
What would you suppose are some of the key elements of the professional email you’re about to write? Some of you would say complete sentences, punctuation, a greeting, etc. And yes! You’re correct (see below). However, I’m thinking of something even more basic: your name. There’s a reason you used to get a couple hundred points on the SAT just for getting your name right. It’s sort of important!
Unique and intriguing usage of punctuation and grammar
Renegade punctuation marks
“I’m sorry I missed your call! This job sounds great! Please call me when you have a moment! I’ll be available today between 3 and 5 pm! I love puppies!”
There’s nothing inherently wrong with our good buddy, the exclamation point (or puppies, for that matter). However, if used too much, it can feel like a caffeine overdose.
The abrasive all-caps method
“I AM INTERESTED IN THIS JOB AND WOULD LIKE TO HAVE THE TIME TO SPEAK WITH YOU ABOUT THE DETAILS. FOR THE LAST SEVERAL YEARS, I HAVE WORKED IN A SIMILAR JOB AND KNOW I CAN HANDLE ALL THE RESPONSIBILITIES OF THIS ROLE. LET ME KNOW WHEN YOU ARE AVAILABLE.”
Did you even read the entire message? It’s hard to get through! There really isn’t anything terribly wrong with the content of that email, but the caps make it rather difficult to feel anything but overwhelmed when reading the text.
Too many things to count
“i am good at customer service and have working in call centr for like 3 years call me if you like my resume”
The only way to make that more hilarious would be to mention that I also have excellent attention to detail. Let grammar check and spell check be your friend, but still don’t forget to proofread. And back to attention to detail; if that line appears in your resume, check it ten times to ensure there are no typos in that sentence. Believe me, it happens. A lot.
A disclaimer for my litany of errors
“Sent from my iPhone. Please excuse any typos”
I think I saved my favorite for last! Sending something from a mobile device does not disable our ability to proofread. There may be some limitations with formatting, but that’s ok. Overall, I think most of us look the other way if a little typo pops up, but mobile device or not, a professional email is still a professional email. And unless you’re driving while emailing (which I know none of us would EVER do, right?), the email systems on mobile devices don’t make it terribly challenging to ensure that your message is properly executed. In the end, it’s a matter of making sure our smart phones are making us smarter!
~ Written by Adam Lafield, Recruiter & Marketing Specialist