Contact theSOPAbout theSOPSupport theSOPWritersEditorsManaging Editors
theSOP logo
Published:July 28th, 2009 18:10 EST

7 Ways to Avoid Saying Or Doing The Wrong Thing With Your Email

By SOP newswire2

Still Making Mistakes with Email?

Email is one of the main ways people communicate in today`s workplace, yet business people still make embarrassing mistakes when sending messages to customers, colleagues, bosses or potential employers.

According to business etiquette expert Barbara Pachter, author of NewRules@Work: 79 Etiquette Tips, Tools, and Techniques to Get Ahead and Stay Ahead (Prentice Hall Press), People don`t always pay attention and, as a result, emails are sent to the wrong addresses, unclear messages create work problems, and messages with mistakes cause the sender to lose credibility. "

Follow these 7 suggestions so your emails send a professional message:

1. Double check that you have selected the right recipient. Pay attention when typing a name from your address book in the "TO" line. It`s easy to select the wrong person.

2. Add the email address last. You don`t want to send an email before you have finished writing and proofing it. Even when you are replying to a message, it`s a good precaution to delete the address and insert it once you are sure the message is ready to be sent.

3. Use a professional email address. Hotmama@... " Diva@... " or the sexyone@... " are not appropriate addresses.

4. Do not come across abrupt--unless you knowingly want to. Read your message out loud. If it sounds harsh to you, it will sound harsh to the reader. You`ll seem friendlier if you use a salutation.

5. Make your message easy to read. Looks count. Vary the length of your sentences and paragraphs. Long sentences or paragraphs are more difficult to read.

6. Be cautious with humor. You can bomb badly. Something perceived as funny when spoken may come across very differently when written.

7. Proofread every message. Mistakes will be noticed and, depending upon the recipient, you will be judged for making them.


Barbara Pachter speaks and coaches on business etiquette and communication, and is the author of numerous business books, including The Power of Positive Confrontation ($14.95, paperback, Marlowe & Co.) and When the Little Things Count ($13.95, paperback, Marlowe & Co.).

She specializes in business etiquette and communication. Her client list features major organizations worldwide, including Microsoft, Pfizer, Chrysler, Cisco and Genentech.

For a review copy of NewRules@Work: 79 Etiquette Tips, Tools, and Techniques to Get Ahead and Stay Ahead, contact: Rosanne Romanello, 212-366-2323, or

For a free copy of Pachter`s communication e-newsletter, Competitive Edge, " your readers can call (856) 751-6141 (NJ) or go to