So you have a team mate or superior whose emails rub you the wrong way. You really try hard not to reply with a pissed off or irritated tone but sometimes you just can’t help yourself.
Use the tips below to foster better communication and avoid a “set it off” moment at work.
- First, always remember that you are responsible for what you say so think twice about anything you put in writing.
- Wait a few minutes or even a day (if it’s not urgent) to respond to emails that ruffle your feathers. You are likely to use more logic rather than emotion if you wait to reply.
- If it’s a complex topic or you realize the person is annoyed or simply on the wrong page, pick up the phone to hash it out instead.
- Assume positive intent. Give the writer the benefit of the doubt. The tone of the email may sound negative but perhaps their intention is not to come off that way. That’s a key con with email- you can’t see facial expressions, body language or hear the person’s tone.
- Maintain professionalism in any scenario and request a face to face meeting if necessary.
- Read your emails at least twice before pressing send. Critically consider if anything you wrote could be easily misunderstood or add fuel to the fire. If so, make the necessary edits to convey a positive and professional tone.
- Last, keep it short. Don’t write an entire paragraph if the issue your are addressing or question you are answering doesn’t require one.