June 22, 2010
Melissa MacBeth, a Lead program Manager in the Office product group at Microsoft wrote a great article with useful Do’s and Dont’s about e-mail.
Below is an excerpt from her article. To read Melissa’s complete list of very good tips click here.
The following rules will help you look professional and get your message across.
- Read your message before you send it.
- Make your subject descriptive and action-oriented. For example: “UCEF: Please send your Board Retreat Dates,” where UCEF is the name of the group, and “Please send…” is the action. Other useful prefixes include “FYI:” and “Action Required.”
- If action is required, state what you want on the Subject line.
- Change the subject of the message if the topic of the conversation changes.
- Keep all messages short and to the point.
- Organize the content of your message from most important to least.
- Consider bolding important information.
- Put action items or questions on separate lines so that they stand out and get noticed.
- Bold people’s names when asking questions. For example: “Ryan: What is the status of the project?”
- Limit the number of people to whom you send a message to those who need to read it.
- Put people who need to be informed on the Cc line.
- Put people who need to respond or take action on the To line.
There are many more tips in the original article. To read Melissa’s complete list of very good tips click here.