Although emails are often seen as less formal than printed business letters, in the business world you cannot afford to let your language appear to be informal. Email may be faster and more efficient, but your client or business partner will not easily forgive correspondence that is too casual. Not to fear! Read on to discover simplesecrets that will add a high level of professionalism to your English emails.
Begin with a greeting
It's important to always open your email with a greeting, such as "Dear Lillian,". Depending on the formality of your relationship, you may want to use their family name as opposed to their given name, i.e. "Dear Mrs. Price,". If the relationship is more casual, you can simply say, "Hi Kelly,"If you’re contacting a company, not an individual, you may write "To Whom It May Concern:"
Thank the recipient
If you are replying to a client's inquiry, you should begin with a line of thanks. For example, if someone has a question about your company, you can say, "Thank you for contacting ABC Company." If someone has replied to one of your emails, be sure to say, "Thank you for your promptreply." or "Thanks for getting back to me." If you can find any way to thank the reader, then do. It will put him or her at ease, and it will make you appear more courteous.
State your purpose
If, however, you are initiating the email communication, it may be impossible to include a line of thanks. Instead, begin by stating your purpose. For example, "I am writing to enquire about …" or "Iam writing in reference to …" It's important to make your purpose clear early on in the email, and then move into the main text of your email. Remember to pay careful attention to grammar, spelling and punctuation, and to avoid run-on sentences by keeping your sentences short and clear.
Before you end your email, it's polite to thank your reader one more time as well as addsome courteous closing remarks. You might start with "Thank you for your patience and cooperation." or "Thank you for your consideration." and then follow up with, "If you have any questions or concerns, don't hesitate to let me know." and "I look forward to hearing from you."
End with a closing
The last step is to include an appropriate closing with your name. "Best regards," "Sincerely," and"Thank you," are all professional. It's a good idea to avoid closings such as "Best wishes," or "Cheers," as these are best used in casual, personal emails. Finally, before you hit the send button, review and spell check your email one more time to make sure it's truly perfect!
Is Your English Too Formal?
Does your English come across as too polite? While formal language isessential with your boss and your customers, you would sound strange to your friends if you speak with them in the same way. To tone down your English for life's casual situations, check out these tips.
Meetings and greetings
Do you ask everyone you see, "How do you do?" Though quite common in days past, today it's only appropriate in very formal situations - not with your friends. In mostsituations, choose a more common phrase like, "How are you?" With friends, you could also say, "Hey, what's up?" or "How's it going?"
Wining and dining
"Would you mind passing me the salt, please?" It's always important to remember your manners, especially when you're eating with business associates or important guests. But when you're just grabbing a bite to eat with friends, and you need the salt,it's quite OK to just say, "Hey, pass the salt."
Coming and going
You receive an urgent message during an important meeting, so you ask, "Would you excuse me for a moment, please?" But what if you're with your friends? Just tell them to "hang on a sec" or say you'll "be right back." Remember, it's not always impolite to be informal.
Didn't hear it?
Your customer is speaking to you,...