There are many times you have probably logged into your work email in the morning, and while reading your messages, thought, Wow, that person must be in a bad mood today! This is a common occurrence for employees who use email regularly during the day.
There are some people who simply aren’t as proficient in the language of the internet as they are in face-to-face communication, which often leads to a message lost in translation.
If you work in a business that relies exclusively or partly on email, we understand your frustration. Read on for how to smooth out these miscommunications and adjust your tone in email.
Watch Your Words
It’s easy for your tone to get lost in an email because email doesn’t allow you to provide people with the verbal and visual cues you send out when you’re speaking directly to them. So when you write something as simple as the word “yep” in an email, it could be interpreted in many different ways, depending on how the person who is reading it feels at that particular time.
Tip: Do not use text language in a business email. Texting is more casual, and when you’re at the workplace, you want to make you preserve a sense of professionalism and diplomacy in your tone. Always spell words out in full, and skip the “LOL”s and “BRB”s; leave those for your lunch break crew.
Double Check Your Work
There are also people who simply aren’t good at conveying the right emotions in email and others who don’t care about how they come off to their coworkers. This laissez-faire attitude toward email communication can be interpreted as careless, and if you care about your job, you don’t want to give off that impression!
Tip: Always make sure that you are rereading what you wrote before hitting the “send” button. Sometimes simpler is better, leaving little room for misinterpretation.
Phone-In Whenever Possible
To prevent your tone of voice from becoming lost in translation, it is wise to phone-in whenever possible. A brief phone call can clear up any confusion, and when you talk to a person on the phone, you are instantly provided with the verbal cues necessary to having a productive conversation.
Tip: Always ask ahead if someone is free for a phone call. Even if you only speak to your colleague for a minute or two, you will still avoid misinterpretation and gain more clarification, and that’s never a bad thing.
At Vaspian, we are finding that more and more people agree: email makes communication convenient, but can also lead to issues if companies aren’t careful. Many organizations are encouraging the use of business phone lines in order to get their points across and make sure their true tones of voice are being translated properly.