Here are some Email Rules which we should follow in our day-to-day email communications; office or personal.
We call them 'Email Etiquette's.'
1. Indent: Keep your mail in Left Indent format. This is the American style and currently being followed.
Alignment: Keep as 'Justified.'
2. Recipients: If you are sending a message to more than one person, it is advisable to keep the recipients in 'Bcc' instead of 'To'. Also in such case, address the recipients by 'Hi', 'Hello', 'Greetings', etc.
If the recipient is a female, address as 'Ms. X' (this is irrespective of the female being married or single). Same applies to a male recipient.
Do NOT use 'Good Morning' and alike, since you never know at what time of the day the recipient may read your message.
3. Font style, Font size: Most preferred font style and size is 'Verdana 10 pt'. If you wish to have give a colour, it should not be anything else than black, blue.
4. Spell Check: Please use the Spell check facility in your mailbox without fail. Every email service provides this useful facility.
5. Length of a paragraph: Avoid extending one paragraph above 5 lines.
6. Avoid using 'Smileys' unnecessarily, especially in official communications.
7. Apply your brains while 'Replying to All'. If not necessary, avoid 'Reply All' function.
8. Signatures (for official purpose only): It is advisable to keep a pre-designed signature for your outgoing mails. When composing a mail at first place, it is advisable to use the full signature details. While replying to mails, reduce your signature details by half.
Signature should have: Your name (first and last only), Designation, Department Name, Organisation Name & Address, Contact details(direct or reception or cell).
9. Avoid sending mails on official email addresses if you have the recipients personal email address. Many corporates consider 'sending to and receiving of mails from external media as Risk issue'.
10. If you have said 'Please find attached', ensure that you attach and re-check the attached document, before sending.
11. Hitting the 'SEND' button should be the last task. Do not hurry in sending the communication, since once sent, it's gone for forever.
12. Avoid being unnecessarily 'informal in formal communications' and 'vice-versa'.
13. Do not write a mail when you are in a hurry. If you are not able to reply in detail, just reply as "Will get back to you soon".
- Anand Wadadekar