Email can be a time waster

by Captain Walker

Categories: Technology

Within the last 24 hours I received an  email from someone asking for some thing or the other. It caused a waste of my time. How?

1. I had to read it about 4 times in attempting to understand what was being asked.

2. In the end I did not understand.

3. I had to type out a clear response, seeking clarification.

4. The email returns hours later clarifying the situation – and I read it and finally understood.

Well yes, I know this is happening around the land between other people too. So what? It doesn’t mean I have to accept it, because other do!

I’ve often noticed that when people write their emails, it’s as though they’re talking to themselves. What does that mean? It means some or all of the following:

1. Poor use of English and broken language.

2. Many assumptions made.

3. Lack of clarity about what is being communicated or sought.

Oh for sure when they’re drafting their emails, they know what they’re talking about – but people it seems – seldom stop to think “Would the other people reading this email understand what I’m saying.” People seem to assume that because they understand what they write, that others will also understand. The latter assumption is actually bunkum!! No – not because you understand what you write means another will understand. You don’t need to be a super-genius to think about that. 

Doesn’t it make sense to spend a few seconds more reading your own email that you’re about to send, as if it was a total stranger reading it? Just to see if they’ll get the relevant issues in the email? Ohh..noooh – that’s too complicated innit?  Ooops I forgot that this is Eng-uh-land, where it’s okay to assume anything – and where if you pay too much attention to things you’re likely to be labelled as ‘OCD’, ‘pedantic’ or ‘arrogant’. People can tell you what to do, but you dare not tell people what to do.

Well stuff all that!! People sending emails need:

1. Write their emails properly.

2. Assist themselves by using grammar properly.

3. Assume bledy nothing!

4. Structure their written thoughts in a way that any person unfamiliar with the email can follow it (obvious exceptions excluded).

5. And demonstrate some consideration for other people’s time.

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