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Dos and don'ts of writing professional e-mails

Citizen and Society Services - Monday, January 07, 2013 6:41:59 AM



Whether you are applying for a job, internship, loan, grant, applying for admission in a college or just writing an e-mail for business or job related communication, these tips will help you give your mails a professional touch
When you are writing a professional e-mail, you have to be very careful about a few things or you might appear very immature or inexperienced. In professional e-mails, you cannot let your personality show as much as you do in personal mails. Professional or business-related e-mails have to be crisp and to-the point and should contain only relevant information. Read the tips below...

1. Professional presentation is a must
Being over-creative and over-innovative is a strict no-no. Use standard formats and standard fonts for professional e-mails. Using varied colours of various font sizes in one mail is just going to portray you as an amateur. Yes you can convey your individuality but through content and not through wrapping.

2. Keep your e-mail id simple and straight
The first and the foremost thing that could help you establish a professional image is your email address. Do not try to be extra creative, clever or confusing. Yes, your e-mail id should portray your professional capacity but in a simple way. It can either be your full name or your middle initials or something related to your profession but not something irrelevant like sexycelina@gmail.com.

3. Always use a professional e-mail signature
As a professional person, you want to leave a lasting impression on a recipient and a key point of knowing how to write professional emails is how to sign off. Your signature is your identity and is left in every message. If you are seeking employment, it is vital to include your name, contact details and alternative phone numbers. This is all part of representing yourself as a professional and finding common ground with other professionals.

4. No emotions or emoticons in e-mails
There is a lot of difference between sending a casual text to a friend and sending a formal mail. In casual chats, we frequently use smileys and emoticons to express what we are feeling. For any professional e-mail, this kind of expression may be considered very inappropriate. You will certainly not put a happy face in the subject of your e-mail when applying for a job. One important tip when writing professional e-mails is that you should allow emotions to dictate your writing. Whether you are happy, sad, frustrated or annoyed, first calm down before you write an e-mail. And even after writing it, double check before you hit the send button.

5. Be careful when using humour
There is a fine line between the between humour and sarcasm and this is very difficult to achieve in writing. There are chances you will be misinterpreted or misunderstood which may not only make you sound very personal but also ruin your image. The same goes for abbreviations or acronyms, frequently used today. Do not use it until you are very sure they will be well-understood.

6. Run a grammar and spell check
Do check your standard of grammar and spellings when writing a professional e-mail. Spelling and grammar errors can portray you as a bad communicator. Remember, first impression is the last impression. If you were a recruting manager, would you hire someone with poor language skills? Certainly not! So read your mail at least twice to check for errors after writing it.






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