These days, emails are often the main way that we communicate in business. Unfortunately, that means that our business partners‘ inboxes are often overloaded with emails, which could mean that our messages get overlooked or aren‘t read properly.
Write emails that will be read
If you want to make sure that your email will be seen and understood, you need to make sure that it is short and to the point.
Below you will find a checklist that I use with students to make sure that their emails will be effective.
This checklist really helped lot of students
Using the checklist really made a difference to one of my students in Luxembourg. She had a client who would never respond to her messages on time.
The problem was that the client often read emails on his mobile phone and so couldn‘t see the whole message.
Once my student started frontloading her emails, i.e. started putting the most important information in the first line, she started getting her client‘s full attention.
- Can I sum up the objective of my email in 14 words? (If you can‘t, the email could be too long.)
- Is my key message mentioned in the first few lines? (The quicker the reader can see the key message, the greater the chance they will become properly engaged with it.)
- Does my email have more than three points? (An email is a short piece of communication. So, if you have more than three points, write more than one email.)
- Have I written in the same way that I speak? (The more naturally you write, the clearer and more authentic you will be.)
- Does my subject line summarise my key points clearly and concisely? (It will be the first thing your reader sees so it needs to make an impact.)
- Does my subject line contain searchable key words? (Key word searches are the easiest way to find old emails. Good key words will help your email be found again.)
- Do I really need to use the cc and bcc function? (Be careful not to fill up people‘s inboxes unnecessarily.)
- Have I attached all the relevant documents? (It‘s very easy to send off an email without its attachments. Double check this before you hit send!)