Email Sent. Not quite well received.

Jay is a regular guy with great ideas & big dreams. Just like you and me he hates Mondays. He spends most of his week finishing up mundane tasks. In the little time that he finds out of his busy schedule, he thinks of most great ideas and works on what he calls his dream project. 

A regular day at work for him starts by arriving at his workplace just about in time for his job update meeting. It moves on to him getting a cup of coffee and hurriedly opening his laptop as if to launch some kind of mission.

He snaps open his Outlook & sorts his email as unread.

After that he spends one hour replying to emails.

His emails read somewhat like this;


– Please update.


– Is this done?


– Approved.


– Can you chcek?


Does your mailbox show messages like this too?

If yes, then you must keep reading.



(A) It is the most crucial tool you use daily.

(B) It is the only medium through which you communicate with your colleagues, business partners & so many people whom you don’t see for days and months together.

Therefore, communication through emails should be treated with a lot of responsibility as they say a lot about your personality.

Let’s check the most common scenarios & how one must deal with it to not look like a drag on emails.

Following Up – Find yourself following up a day before the due date? Or right on the due date? You might want to avoid that. If it’s very urgent, pick up the phone to find out if your project is right on track. If it’s delayed by a day or two, don’t send a hasty email but again, pick up the phone to ask if there are any road blocks & if you can provide any help.

You can write a polite email if delivery is delayed by more than three days. You must also avoid marking the entire world in CC on mails, unless it’s important to update somebody else. Marking a lot of people makes the recipient feel less important.

Feedback – Giving feedback does make you feel a little authoritative but that does not mean you have to go on a criticizing spree. Mostly if the outcome is not as per what you want, it is also a reflection of how you gave the initial brief. Feedback should be clear and not as vague as – this is disapproved, you need to do better, and this does not work.

Always try & be clear on why something does not work for you? Why would you do it some other way? This way you will be able to receive a desirable outcome faster.

Payment – If your client has not paid you on time it is not that they don’t want to pay. It’s always a matter of something not working somewhere, some process not being followed, and some kind of glitch somewhere. If your payment has been delayed you must highlight it, speak to your client on the phone or meet them. Don’t try & sound desperate because that does not reflect well on your part. If you’re on the other side of the story try & explain the delay in payments to your vendor sooner.

Acknowledgment – Always acknowledge the emails that you receive. Even if you don’t have the time to respond, let the sender know that you will check & reply at a convenient time. The sender should know that you are not deliberately ignoring or are irresponsible.

Once you keep in mind the above mentioned points, you will build a stronger rapport with your peers, and will get the things done for you faster. The easy way to understand & follow this is to know that emotions play a sensitive role while communicating & are often misunderstood through emails. This way, you will automatically write an email without offending or annoying the recipient.

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