Writing Style – Emails: Pet Peeves

I have found that most people have a love/hate relationship with emails. Here’s an opportunity to vent and to learn. I am conducting a survey of business people’s pet peeves when it comes to this form of communication.

My pet peeve is emails that lack phone numbers. Sometimes if a reply is lengthy or negative, I would rather answer it by phone. However, if there is no phone number, further electronic communication is the only option.

One workshop participant said he never included his phone number because people could always look it up in the company directory. This was the same person who also complained about the number of messages he received every day and questioned why people no longer used the phone.

Relying on people to look up phone numbers during a busy work day is naïve. In addition, if you are accessing your emails from a BlackBerry or other external source, the company directory may not be available.

Please do me, your colleagues and your clients a favour. Add your phone number to your signature box. If you don’t use a signature box, at least include your number after your name.

Don’t consign the readers of your messages to a never-ending email spiral.

Alright, you have heard my pet peeve – let’s hear yours.