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Tactics for writing effective emails!

English Tutoring Professional Writing

You may have to work hard to reach the top of your field, but to finesse an email, we must start at the top.

  1. Ensure the subject line is well-chosen. It should be functional, relating directly to the email body, and engaging – grabbing the recipient’s attention.

E.g.:

26 confirmed for planning day – will we need a larger venue?  This works, as it uses the subject line to convey the important idea. It is specific & it also asks a question, grabbing the reader’s attention.

  1. Keep the message focused. Remember, people are generally time-poor, so it’s vital to be succinct. Ask yourself: are there any words that are unnecessary? Do I go off topic or talk about anything unrelated?
  2. A great way to ensure this is to proofread the email before you hit send, especially if you’re sending an email to a manager or important stakeholder, taking an extra minute or two to ensure accuracy is important. A great tip is to read what you have typed aloud. When we speak words, we hear as well as see, so doubling our efforts to pick up on any errors. Show your email to a colleague for a fresh set of eyes, too.
  3. Ensure your email is polite. While being concise is good, you don’t want to appear abrupt or rude. A few simple suggestions can help with this:
  • Use both passive and active tone of voice, depending on the nature of the email.

For example, if you are wanting to raise a complaint with colleagues, try the passive, as it makes it less personal and confronting.

  • Use vague language so that you don’t seem demanding.
  • Use the past tense to create distance and diminish a sense of urgency or anxiety.

We will go into more detail & provide lots of helpful examples of point 4. in PART TWO. Stay tuned!

to be continued…next week. 

Contact Elizabeth on 0402 316 391 or elizabeth@esltutoringservices.com to discuss your English needs.