Bad Email Habits, Part 1

       According to the McKinsey Global Institute, 28% of today’s working world spends their time using email. When you Google search “bad email habits,” over 800,000 results come up. A recent article by Kimberly Paterson, president of CIM and a Certified Energy Leadership Coach noted the biggest trends from this search. Some of the top ones include people who don’t respond to emails within an acceptable amount of time, those who over-rely on email and people who ramble on and bury headlines.

     Not responding to an email in a timely fashion can arguably cause some of the most annoyance in the workplace and in the academic world. Not responding to an email can be due to prioritizing, but it can come off as rude to the sender. Even though the answer or response may not be readily available in less than 24 hours, acknowledging the message in some way is important. Forgetting or avoiding replying altogether can make the sender think you are either disorganized, slow with checking or using technology, or simply ignoring them.

     Earlier this summer we wrote a blog about the best methods of communication in the workplace/academic world. If a message needs to be conveyed and involves communicating complex information, negative information, trying to reach an agreement on something, etc., one should avoid using email and use face-to-face or the telephone conversation instead.

     Rambling on about unnecessary information and burying your point in a plethora of paragraphs also can cause frustration and annoyance to the reader and demonstrates poor writing skills. It’s important to be clear and succinct while also getting your point across with all of the necessary information.

     So, if you’re part of the 28%, check your email frequently, be succinct, and don’t be afraid to pick up the phone if you need to.