Quid Pro Grow

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Professional Emails and Memos

There are specific concepts associated with each type of writing, including: emails and memos. It is more complicated than writing a sign and less complicated than writing an essay. There are books about writing emails and memos. I identified the three most important concepts: keep it short, complement the recipient and use links.

Signs are great. With one or two words, it is possible to communicate a lot of information. They bring attention to a business or activity. This is readable from a distance. When someone looks at it, it makes an impression.

Other types of business communications also have a series of concepts. A marketing brochure should have a memorable catch phrase. A cover letter expresses four points that are important to an employer. A formal business letter explains the reason for the letter and additional important information.

Professional emails and memos are direct statements. These are responses or conversations for a specific purpose: reply to an application, reply to a job offer, specific information about a new product or a change in policy.

I am successful when using email to schedule appointments, acknowledge emails and carry on conversations about specific topics. When getting out of college, I thought my writing should be more expressive and follow the traditional letter formation. This is incorrect.

An effective email or memo focuses on one topic. It is good to avoid subtopics. Sometimes it is necessary. The first sentence identifies the topic.

An example of replying to a job offer, "Thank you for contacting me about my job application."

The second and potentially third sentence contains your action or response to the email. "I would like to schedule an interview before the weekend."

Sometimes, it is necessary to write two sentences, "I would like to schedule interview before the weekend. If we could meet in the mourning, that would be great."

A recruiter will respond by restating the purpose of the email, confirming a scheduled time and sending the address. Then, it is important to acknowledge receiving the email. "Thank you, I will be at the interview at 9:00 am on Monday."

Saying, "thank you," in the signature is common. It is important to be positive. It is debatable whether or not to say it twice. I do not include signatures as part of the body of the message.

Signatures can be overdone. Truthfully, emails can be printed out and left on a desk where people can see it. People want to include all their contact information; however, it is better to limit information to name, title (if applicable), office (if applicable) and city. Contact phone or email is optional. Here are two examples of a signature.

Thank you,
Jane Smith
Columbus, OH

Thank you,
Jane Smith
Parkway Bld. A
Columbus, OH

Compliments are great. They be a sentence in length and honest. A common phrase is, "I appreciate you contacting me." It works in most situations. It is honest. A topic specific compliment is better.

Compliments should be professional and remain on topic. It is not professional to compliment someone's hair or outfit.

It is easy to add compliments, such as: "Thank you for responding to my application so quickly;" "I hear great things about your company," or "I am excited to meet you for an interview."

These are all great statements that acknowledge and appreciate something directly related to the email. This is also effective when responding to memos.

In real life, things are not always wonderful. It is possible to have ongoing conversations through email. Occasionally, they found another job or a new policy is offensive.

In ongoing conversations through email, emails are still short and focus on the topic. It is not as important to refresh the recipient's memory about the topic. It is also not as important to compliment them in each email. Compliment in the first and last email. Restate or compliment as necessary.

Compliments counteract critical statements. Focus relays the information. If it is a major issue, schedule an appointment to talk to someone in management.

Expansive amounts of information need links and attachments. The format for the email or memo is the same. It is a short message with one topic. Sometimes, you do not want to have a separate emails for each topic. Always separate topics in memos.

Sending a memo by emails allows the use of hyperlinks. Otherwise, explain where the information is found. "There is a pamphlet in the lunchroom."

When working on a project, there is a lot of information: research paper, slide show, charts and other information. Restate the topic, give a compliment, attach information and include hyperlinks.

"The information we spoke about on Thursday is attached. I am still working on it. I appreciate you working with me on this. Here is the link to a related article."

Throughout the years of writing many professional emails, these are steps I remember whenever an email. I write emails to friends and family in this format. It is straightforward and makes sense. I will talk to them later.