In today’s age, a vast majority of professional communication takes place through emails. Furthermore, sometimes your initial contact with someone may be by sending them an email. No matter the reason for the correspondence, it is so important to set yourself up for success by creating a profile of professionalism and sophistication that is highly evident within your ability to articulate a well-orchestrated email. Follow these fundamental guidelines when developing your next email message.
- Generate a clear subject line – While it needs to be brief, keep in mind that this element is the first thing the recipient will read from you.
- Use professional acknowledgements – Use Dear (the person’s name), upon starting. However, only address someone by their first name if you are on familiar terms with them. If you do not have the name or title of the person you are contacting, consider starting the body of your email with, Good morning/afternoon/evening.
- Include a courteous greeting – Mentioning something brief such as, I hope this email finds you well, gives the recipient an idea your overall polite manner.
- Introduce yourself – If this is your first time contacting this person, it is helpful to include your name and job title, if relevant, and any pertinent details about yourself.
- Include only concise content in the body – The most important thing to do is to stay on point. Avoid including too many details, but rather, work to emphasis the main points.
- Conclude with follow up information – Provide the recipient with information on how you are looking to move forward professionally with them. Consider including information for setting up a time for further conversation.
- Say Thank you – Be sure to present your gratitude for having the recipient take the time to read the message and consider moving forward.
- Develop a strong signature – Close with Sincerely, (Your first name & last). All important contact information should be included here: phone number, email address, and company name.
- Be sure to proofread – Before pressing send, reread your work to ensure that no information is missing and that the included topics are presented clearly.
Next time you sit down to develop your next email, recall these nine points for building a professional voice through your correspondence while including kindness and courtesy.