Emails 101

Basics of email etiquette and writing professional emails

Sophie avatar
Written by Sophie
Updated over a week ago

Getting on top of how emails are used in your company is really important, as they're often used as the main form of communication.

Key email basics are:

  • Be responsive! Try to respond to emails as quickly as possible.

  • Be succinct! Make sure your responses are edited and clear.

  • Be thoughtful! Know your audience - if they tend to be very polite and formal, write in that language.

Getting more specific, there are key elements of emails that you should be aware of:

Subject Line: The subject line should concisely convey your purpose for writing. Your subject line can be as simple as "Thank You" or "Request for Recommendation".

Greeting: Even if you are writing a very short email, include a greeting. If you know the name of the person, include it, e.g. Hi Marie, or Dear Marie (if you are less familiar with the recipient). 

Length: Keep your email as concise as possible. People tend to skim long emails, so only include essential information. Try to bullet point your key messages if you can. 

Font Style: Avoid ornate, playful, or coloured fonts; these distract from your message. Also avoid overusing bold and italics as well, which make an email look cluttered and don’t write in all capital letters either; this comes across as angry or overexcited in an email.

Spelling and Grammar: Edit your email carefully before sending it.

Closing: Sign off with a brief "Thank you," "Warm regards," or other simple send-off, and then your name.

Checklist: Before you click send, double check to make sure: 

  • The subject line of your email is filled in

  • You have included a signature ( find out how to design this for Outlook or Gmail )

  • You are sending the message to the right contact person

  • You have filled in the Bcc field to send a copy to yourself so you have a record of the email message

  • Spell check and check your grammar and capitalisation. 

    • Hatch tip: Download Grammarly here it's a great tool!

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