10 Email Etiquette Rules for Communicating with Co-workers

by | Oct 4, 2023

In this article
5 min read

Email etiquette comprises social guidelines influencing how individuals communicate with each other through email. These recommendations slightly vary based on company, industry, and generation. Nonetheless, it is necessitated that the spirit of etiquette in work emails is to interact respectfully and clearly.

Embracing etiquette in emails will assist you in establishing your professionalism, communicating better, and building stronger relationships. Email etiquette in the workplace goes a long way in leveling up your career path.

Best Practices of Email Communication

By following the below guidelines, you need to ensure that your agendas are communicated clearly over email.

email etiquette

Keep the tone of the email professional

If you do not know your prospect well after your call, it is always the best idea to keep your greeting formal and the subject line descriptive. Using the appropriate level of formality is significant in email communication.

Refrain from using vague subject lines

Most people open emails considering the subject line. It is recommended that you keep your subject lines clear, descriptive, and actionable, specifically if your email is for marketing purposes.

For people who get numerous emails a day, a crisp subject line makes it easier for the reader to know more about the content and sort it the right way.

Use appropriate punctuation in emails

The essence of punctuation marks is such that it is subtle when used appropriately and noticeable when you do not. Hence, the emails should be properly punctuated.

Simple sentence structures, correct punctuation, and capitalization go a long way in email communication.

Practice good grammar

Unless you invest your entire attention to getting into the depths of grammar, you are bound to make occasional mistakes. The good news is that if you get rid of the basic mix-ups that your recipient might notice, you’ll be fine.

Pro tip: Consider using a digital editor for rectifying grammatical errors. For instance, Grammarly is a free tool that monitors everything you draft and gives suggestions for improving grammar and spelling errors in real-time.

Resist the use of emojis in emails

It is recommended that unless your recipient has already used an emoji, or you are certain that it would not impact your brand image, resist the urge to use emojis over emails.

Even though using emojis in certain contexts is okay, it is best to stay away from adding any strange, vague, and offensive emojis.

Keep subject lines descriptive and short

You need to keep in mind that people check their inboxes in a jiffy, so the more concise and clear the subject line is, the better. When you draft a concise subject line, think of how your email can assist the recipients.

You need to make that benefit clear. Further, email subject lines will get shortened in case they are too long, specifically on mobile devices. With a substantial number of emails being opened on mobile devices, a subject line with fewer than 50 characters is recommended to ensure that the people who scan your emails can read the message entirely.

Carefully select your email salutation

You need to be careful in picking a greeting that can be informal or formal, based on whom you are writing an email to and what your relationship with the recipient is like.

Some of the casual email greetings are:

  • Hi
  • Hey
  • Hi/hey there
  • Good (morning, afternoon, evening)
  • [Name]

Some of the formal email greetings include:

  • Dear Mr./Ms. [last name]
  • Dear [first name]

Choose an email salutation correctly and use the correct punctuation with your salutation. It should be subtle when you use it properly and evident if you don’t.

Leave the correct impression with your sign-off over email

An appropriate sign-off will complement the content and tone of your email. As it is the last thing a recipient gets to read, this intrigues their lasting impression. If the tone of your email is light-hearted, you can end with a warm sign-off.

Some instances of formal sign-offs include:

  • Thank you
  • Thank you for your time
  • Regards
  • Have a wonderful weekend/day

Some instances of informal sign-offs include:

  • Best
  • Cheers
  • Thanks
  • Thanks again
  • Enjoy the weekend
  • Happy (day of the week)
  • Talk to you (tomorrow, on a specific day, when you get back)
  • Looking forward to our next conversation
  • Looking forward to working together
  • Excited to know your thoughts

Below mentioned are some closing lines that you should avoid using:

  • Sincerely (outdated)
  • Kind regards (unnatural)
  • Respectfully (too random)
  • Warmly (too relaxed)
  • Cordially (too stilted)
  • Xoxo (too personal)
  • [Your name] (abrupt)

Cross-check the recipient’s name

Always double-check if you have spelled the name of your recipient correctly. It is a good idea to check their LinkedIn name and match the headline to the recipient’s name used in the email. Avoid shortening their name unless they have signed their email that way.

Use sentence case in emails

Do not go overboard with capitalization unless necessary. It is important to use sentence case in professional emails. Writing a professional email needs proper capitalization, that is capitalizing the first letter of the first word and every proper noun in the sentence.

All in All

The way of communication varies from culture to culture. Email is a type of communication that has a personal touch and is customized to serve the cultural context of the reader. It is a reliable way to avoid miscommunication and develop strong relationships among team members. The most important takeaways from this blog are the three Ps: Precise, Polite, and Professional. They will make your email game on point and avoid any mishap.

Ensure that you are using the above email etiquette tips and you will be able to start genuine relationships with your teammates.

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