At work, apart from meetings and verbal one-on-one, email is one medium that is extensively used for communicating important updates to colleagues, bosses and clients associated with companies. You must be using official emails for the same purpose and making sure that your words are framed in the right way for a clear and crisp message. The proper way of writing an email is learnt over a course of time and it takes a lot of blunders and stupid mistakes to master the art. Believe it. This is a fact. It is impossible to deny the thing because you too must have stumbled upon many of them and have learnt from every wrong step followed in your past. Here are 5 of the bitter instances at work where your attempt to use official email backfired like hell.
This could also be a tutorial for fresh entrants in corporate and other professionals who have spent few years here. Learn from these 5 instances so that you don’t fall prey to them:
Too Much of Escalations on Record
You think that it is being responsible when you escalate an issue on mail and refer the same immediately to your boss and peers. Yes you are correct as mistakes should be highlighted as soon as possible. However, anything in excess pricks a lot and simultaneously projects you in a very bad light. There comes a time when you start escalating every second issue and highlight mistakes in a given assignment over a number of emails. Bosses appreciate keen observers and therefore appreciate you but you must understand that too much of it raptures his trust in you. Your intent to highlight slip-ups over emails can damage someone else’s professional image and on top of that frequent inbox notifications can also bother your manager. If you have done this in the past then you very well know the result; angry peers and an uptight reaction from your manager. The best idea is to discuss within teams and not shoot an email for every second petite issues.
Emotional Outbursts & Over-Reaction
No matter how experienced and professional you are, sometimes your emotions tend to take a bad face at work. This could be due to a suppressing mail from a boss or something really de-motivating despite your best of efforts or simply an insult. Moreover, there are also instances wherein you just cannot understand the connotation and reply it on the basis of an assumption or a pre-made picture in your mind. Sometimes, we tend to go by the image of an individual and not by his words and thus, reply something that is crass and unprofessional. This boomerangs awfully leaving behind a tarnished professional persona and dents your future in a team. If you have drafted an email in past that was a result of an emotional gush then you might have got your lesson learned right, by now. For all those who are debutantes in corporate, can fall prey to such scenarios easily. Bosses too hate spontaneity that is negative by face. Remember, before putting your voice on record; make sure you have investigated the situation carefully.
Asking Team & Superiors For Updates
Asking for updates and informing the same on time is a good work habit. However, doing it frequently can be both bothersome and irritating. If you don’t take your organizational hierarchy seriously then it is a serious slip at your end. Not all updates are required to be drafted on an email and there isn’t any need to fill in everyone’s inbox after every half hour. If there are assignments that needs frequent updates and information flow, then it can be done easily through meetings and an one-on-one. All the discussions can then be drafted as an MOM and send across to the relevant people in loop. This encourages transparency and builds a stronger team spirit. If you had a habit in your initial days of documenting everything on mail then you might have understood by now that there are things that can be better resolved via meetings. Further, a manager hates the idea of his team not talking to each other and proliferating information and everything on mail.
Emailing Leaves & Unplanned Absence
In an attempt to appear dire professional in your office, you tend to make mistakes and overdo things that are possibly unnecessary. One such aspect is discussion on leaves and unplanned absences from work. You usually discuss such things with your boss in an off work meeting but one fine day you decided to not discuss it but mail at the first place. This was a glitch and a huge slip from your side. Such emails that refer leaves come directly on face and your boss tends to take it as information rather than a request yearning for approval. This would be straight away taken as a harsh act rather than a professional one. If there is a prior engagement or an occasion back at home then it would be best if you discuss it with your superiors and then draft an email looping in all the stakeholders. It is good to put things on mail but leaves should be discussed first and then documented on paper. Call it an utter professional thing but fact is that you cannot inform things just like that. You must have now understood it by heart and make sure you don’t bring back the episode from the history.
It is crucial for you to understand the thin line between being professional and being upright rude. Learn from your past and move on in the right way. Stay smart.