The number of business letters has declined
considerably due to the prevalence of e-mail, but this is no excuse to pay any
less attention to the content and style of an e-mail. If you follow the rules
set out below, your e-mail correspondence too will have the desired effect.
Special rules apply for e-mail correspondence:
- Invitations (apart from to in-house meetings), congratulations
and apologies by e-mail are bad form; you should opt for a letter
- Send an intermediate reply if you are unable to respond to an e-mail immediately, stating when you will give your full response.
- Go through your e-mails daily. Users of a rapid medium expect a rapid response in return.
not use abbreviations such as “fyi“, “thx“ or
“asap“; not everyone knows what they stand for.
- Always give a substantive description in the subject line to indicate the content of your e-mail.
- Always use the correct form of address and sign off correctly. For that there is always time.
provide all the sender’s details (address, telephone / fax
number) at the end of an e-mail so that the recipient may choose how to
- Never send confidential information via the Internet.
You will make a particularly bad impression if you do
not respond to a letter or an e-mail promptly or at all. The anticipated
response time for an e-mail is two working days and one week for a letter. If
you are unable to give a full response within this time, you should send an intermediate
Correct correspondence style is seen as integral to manners these days ‑ just
as the appropriate demeanour towards the customer is. You simply make a better
impression on people if you obey certain rules. Even if there is no malicious
intent behind clumsy formulations or thoughtlessness as regards content, it can
still have a subtle impact on relations with the recipient. Source
Anke Quittschau & Christina Tabernig
Phone 08157-92 43 43
Fax 08157-92 43