Flair of Writing Effective E-mails
| Brig. (Dr) Sunil Kumar Moudgil (Retd) - 01 Dec 2019

Though emails usually aren’t as formal as letters, but they still need to be professionally written to give a good image of you beside your organization/institution. Presently as a student or later when going through the professional journey, transacting by writing e-mail is one of the essential methods of communication. The salient points in writing email are enumerated as follows; -
1. Always use a professional email address. Ideally, your email address should be a variation of your real name, not a username or nickname.
2. Adhere to 5 Cs of business writing; Clear, Credible, Concise, Coherent and Compelling.
3.  Follow 4 steps of writing to convert an idea into description: 
a. Think about what you’re going to say and the reader(s)
b. Write a first draft
c. Review and edit what you’ve written
d. Use spell check/Proof-read
4. Be positive and be courteous. Manners cost nothing. By using pleasing & positive words make you connect to the recipient instantaneously. 
a. Look at these words (correct words): helpful, good question, agreed, together, useful, I’d be delighted, mutual, opportunity
b. Now look at these (incorrect words): busy, crisis, failure, forget it, I can’t, it’s impossible, waste, hard
5. The words you use show your attitude to life so choose your words wisely.
6. Simple steps to make sure emails are perfectly professional.
a. Begin with a greeting
b. Thank the recipient
c. State your purpose
d. Add closing remark
e. And then close
7. Respect readers time, so ‘Keep It Short & Simple’ (KISS).
 The unwritten rules of Netiquette (Network Etiquette) which help build rapport online and avoid offending others are;-
• Don’t send e-mail when in a bad mood. 
• Don’t request delivery and read receipts 
• Don’t ask to recall a message or a conversation
• Be concise and to the point. Avoid long sentences
• Answer all questions, and pre-empt further questions
• Use proper spelling, grammar & punctuation
• Do not attach unnecessary files
• Use proper structure & layout
• Do not overuse the high priority option
• Do not write in CAPITALS. They appear loud
• Do not overuse Reply to All
• Take care with abbreviations. First expand the word then it can be abbreviated in follow up. 
• Be careful with formatting, font size, use of colours. 
• Use a meaningful subject line
• Do not use email to discuss confidential information
• Avoid using URGENT and IMPORTANT
• Don’t reply to Spam
• Use cc: field sparingly 
 The beautiful part of writing is that you do not have to get it right for the first time. If you do not get the right word or idea or message, then keep looking for one. Don’t settle. Send an e-mail only when you enjoy what you have written. 
    Happy e-mailing!

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