Ensuring your staff understand correct email etiquette

It is amazing to find in this day and age that many business owners do not understand the importance of good grammar and etiquette when it comes to writing emails.  In fact, many people send emails late or don’t even attempt to reply at all. 

Clients usually appreciate good customer service and professional email responses fall into this category.  If your CENTURY 21 Franchise is able to respond to emails efficiently and helpfully, you could create a competitive advantage for your real estate agency.

As the owner and/or manager of the Franchise it is recommended that you provide guidelines for your employees outlining correct etiquette for writing emails at work.

Suggestions include:
1. Always use appropriate business language in all electronic communications.
Remember that emails can last forever.  Never write inappropriate words or comments in work emails, even if they are to personal friends or colleagues.

2. Use spell-check  
Spell-check needs to become habit when sending out emails to clients.  Poor grammar is an immediate sign that your Franchise may lack attention to detail.  You do not want to turn away new or existing clients from poorly constructed emails. 

3. Take your time to react to situations
Whilst responding to emails promptly is recommended, it is also important to take a moment to step away from an email containing criticism to reflect on how to write a diplomatic and clever response.  If you cannot think of anything nice or constructive to say, perhaps call the person to resolve the matter. 

4. Use caution with the ‘Reply to All’ button
Embarrassing moments can happen when you accidently send an email meant for one person to a large number of people.  Take care.
 
5. Be concise and to the point
Do not make your emails longer than necessary.  This will discourage people from reading them and could make them harder to access from a mobile phone. 

6. Make emails personal
Personally address your emails and try to include customised content, even when using a template.  Avoid sending automated emails wherever possible. 

7. Do not over-use the high priority function
Use the high priority function only when an email is extremely important.  If overused, people could begin to ignore the significance of your emails. 

8. Do not write in CAPTIALS
Emailing in capital letters gives the impression that you are SHOUTING to your recipient. 

9. Don’t leave out the email’s message thread
Try to reply to emails instead of starting a new message as it can be helpful to have immediate access to previous correspondence.  Building email threads will also help you manage your inbox when you need to search for prior comment.

10. Do not abbreviate or attach unnecessary files
Be careful about using abbreviations in your emails as the recipient may not understand your meaning.  Where possible try to compress large files and only send attachments where necessary.

It is often worth establishing an office policy regarding email etiquette and taking the time to convey to your team the importance of such etiquette.  Remember that one poisonous email can damage the reputation of your real estate franchise.

 

Posted by George Tarbey on 01/11/2010 at 3:44 PM | Categories:

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