Business E-Mail Quality Basics
Business E-Mail Quality Basics
Tim Burress (E-mail Etiquette and Organization Specialist) gives expert video advice on: Why is business e-mail quality so low?; What's the best way to improve the quality of my e-mails? and more...
What is e-mail quality?
E-mail quality as we define it is the clearness of the e-mail; the conciseness of the e-mail or the action-ability of an e-mail. In other words, you get and e-mail and you know exactly what the sender is asking you to do or requesting you to do. That's the quality of an e-mail; when it's clear, crisp and concise.
Why is business e-mail quality so low?
The major challenge is with e-mail, around the quality of e-mail is that they can be too robust, too long, in other words someone starts to type a message and they just go on too long. And the longer you type often times the more you have a chance of contradicting something that you typed earlier and that can be very confusing to someone after they've read all the way through a message. They can be too short and when they're too short they're usually incomplete and they lack the full message so you're not sure why someone wants you to do something. And when e-mails are either long or short like that it causes e-mails to come back to the original sender, hence it takes a longer time to complete something.
What is the danger of sending low-quality business e-mail?
The dangers of sending a sloppy or poor e-mail is that you create that identity. People may see you a ratio of 100:1 in e-mail. In other words, I may interact with a very senior person in my company a hundred times in e-mail than I will one time face to face. Those people are very high, corporate level executives and so forth. They can see you very easily in e-mail. And they'll form an identity about who you are; "Gee, so and so is very long and rambling. They don't get to the point, they're confusing. I'm not sure about all of these attachments, they're too short, they're too vague." So you're creating an identity at a rate of about 100:1 in email. If you want to improve your identity in a company, change the way you e-mail.
How much of our business e-mail is unclear?
65% of the e-mail we receive, receivers will say it's unclear. It's confusing or misleading to that person that's receiving it. And that causes e-mail to come back to the original sender.
How do low-quality business e-mails waste money?
The International Data Corporation, IDC, a lead researcher by the name of Susan Feldman, did research around the cost of lost information, meaning someone has sent something to you electronically, you've received it as an e-mail, you store it someplace and you can't find it. When you can't find it, you usually e-mail someone for it, which costs time. Then they're looking for it, which costs them time. When they don't find it and they e-mail you back, then you've lost a lot of time. Then you create it yourself and you try to create it off your memory. Perhaps you're correct in what you recall from your memory, if not, then it's incorrect information. And when you can't find the information at all, or you've gotten the wrong information back from someone, an old price sheet, it's just not having the right information.
Why would I need to improve the quality of my business e-mails?
The importance of improving email quality is that right now email quality is at an all time low, largely due to the high volume of e-mail that we get. We are trying to get through our e-mail in a very fast pace, so we are not putting in the time it takes to send a clear well structured e-mail. We are just trying to get through it quickly. So part of the problem is our own burden of e-mail we have trying to get through it quickly. Often not putting in the time that we need to improve the e-mail.
How does my business e-mail quality affect how others perceive me?
People appear in E-mail as a name and you create an identity. You can easily look at your inbox and pick out people and say, "Gee, I always get E-mails from so and so. This person tends to be very long or confusing" or "This persons very short and brief" or "This person puts lots of attachments on" or "This person has misspellings". So you create a persona that you project into an E-mail that may not be the image that you want to create. And so, sometimes people aren't quite aware of that, they're so busy doing E-mail that they quickly bang out an E-mail and send it without really thinking about the image that they're creating by the receiver.
Why do people write low-quality business e-mails?
The general cost for low-quality e-mail is a fact that the sender is not open taking about by the receiver. so the other words what happen the head doesn't open get conveyed out through the finger tips .for the example that is if you receiving email of the someone and your confused by and so you call on their office and you say I am confused by the email what can you to tell you by meet punish and they mail to you is saying something to what I meet was these. And want to tell you are very difficult by your email.
What's the best way to improve the quality of my e-mails?
The best way to improve e-mail quality is to start with the subject line. Strengthen that subject line. And what I mean by that is improve the description, the clarity of that subject line. Instead of using something vague, like "FYI" or "One more thing" or "Here it is", use something that's clear and description about what you want to type below. If your subject line is clear and descriptive, you tend to write a clear and descriptive body of the message below. If you have a vague subject line, you tend to be long and rambling and verbose.
How will the quality of my business e-mail help the recipient?
E-mail quality is the message itself. Is it clear and concise and what we call actionable to the receiver. Can the receiver act and move and do as the sender asked or requested him?