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Enhancing Business Communication with Email

Professional Email

Student’s Name

Institutional Affiliation

Advantages of Using Email to the Business Professional

One of the advantages of using email as a business professional is that it is an appropriate channel for communication in the event that a formal record is required. Essentially, once an email has been sent, it is saved permanently for purposes of future reference. Additionally, an email is an appropriate choice for disseminating short and timely information, which is expected to reach a multitude of individuals within the organization (Lawson et al., 2019). Another advantage of utilizing this type of communication is the fact that the message embedded within is precise as it contains a direct subject line, which reveals the relevance of the email sent to the recipient (Kalla, 2005). Moreover, they are ideal in communicating short and precise messages that are of organizational context without using jargon that would distort the original information. Besides, emails necessitate the need for the appropriate feedback through the incorporation of a “call to action” for the recipient of the email. Typically, the “call to action” feature of an email provides guidance on whether or not a reply is expected from the receiver (Hastings & Payne, 2013). Further, the “call to action” feature of the email is inserted at the end of the drafted message. Another function of the “call to action” to serve as confirmation feedback, which indicates that the intended message has been received and that the recipient has fully understood its contents.

Appropriateness of Emails as a Channel of Communication

While emails are essential in business communication, they are not appropriate in all circumstances. Communication via email is most suitable within the organizational context. It is often preferred for exchanging information among employees and employers, and for formal and legal tasks of a company (Lawson et al., 2019). In other cases, hard-copy communication such as the utilization of letters and memos is used (Evans, 2012). Furthermore, emails are susceptible to technical errors such as sending an email to the wrong recipient or mistyping a person’s email address. The use of email may also be subjected to noise, which culminates in the distortion of information, which would not be received as expected (Bharadwaj, 2014). An example of such noise is when an email may get lost in the sheer volume of online correspondence that is received by an individual on a daily basis.

Legal Considerations When Using Emails for Workplace Communication

Emails are easy to compose and send. Hence, ill-conceived writing in the organizational context may prove detrimental to a professional’s career (Mazmanian, Orlikowski & Yates, 2013). The conversation that is captured within an email is often available for widespread readership, specifically by the individuals who have been involved in the email discussions. This leads to privacy issues, as there is a risk of revealing company’s private information to competitors (Lawson et al., 2019). Equally important is the fact that a record exists whereby previously written texts, including the sender and recipients, are captured. Such information may be printed off to form part of a legal document insofar as the organization is concerned. Moreover, emails are generally considered legal documents; thus copyright laws may be enforced (Bansler & Havn, 2003). Accordingly, forwarding of information that is protected by copyright such as graphics, logos, text and audio can amount to a breach of copyright even if the most recent of senders were not involved in the original offense. In this regard, most organizations have a comprehensive email policy, which comprehensively spells out the rights and duties of employees when using such a communication platform.

Points to Include in a Professional Email

One of the key elements to incorporate in a professional email is a direct and specific subject line, which effectively captures the reader’s attention and informs the receiver of the content what to expect. The directness of a subject line informs the recipient of the relevance of the email to him (Turnage, 2007). Another aspect to consider is that the body of the email ought to be fitted into one screen so that no scrolling would be necessary. In the case where details are required, it would be practical use hyperlinks and attachments as emails are not considered as the most appropriate channel for communicating long messages (Downs & Adrian, 2012). Besides, salutations and signoffs are also integral in professional emails as they exclusively define the nature and context of the communication that is taking place between the participants (Lawson et al., 2019). Additionally, “call to action” should be incorporated at the end of the email since it serves as the basis of informing the receiver on whether a reply to the email is required or not.

Essence of the Consideration of the Basic Theory of Communication in Professional Email Writing

The basic theory of communication captures various points to be considered when using professional emails. These include the following:

  1. Checking and responding to emails in a swift manner.
  2. Only forwarding emails where the sender has the permission to do so.
  3. Using emails in a selective manner and only for the intended purposes.
  4. Exercising emotional intelligence as errors and words are likely to be taken out of context and deemed unprofessional.
  5. Abiding by the email policy that is defined by the given organization (Dabbish, 2005).

The consideration of the aforementioned points is instrumental in avoiding the advent of negative legal implications, which may be detrimental to the career of an employee. Additionally, these points act as a buffer that ensures efficiency in communication through email.

Part B

One of the errors in the draft email is that the sender generally used casual language, thus rendering the email unprofessional. For instance, the salutation “Heeeeey Cynthia” is informal and may be interpreted as being tacky by the recipient. Instead, the sender should have started with a more professional tone, such as “Dear Cynthia.” Moreover, in as much as the sender of the email wishes to express delight at being afforded the opportunity for the work experience, the use of phrases, such as “get it? Haha,” are inappropriate for use in professional emails. Fundamentally, emails ought to use short and precise messages to limit the chances of distorting the intended message. Equally important is the fact that the email lacks an effective subject line, which would have been instrumental in drawing the attention of the recipient to the email while effectively capturing the message and informing the receiver on the content. Such an email is likely to fall victim to the effect of noise that is characteristic of email use. Thus, it is likely that the email would be ignored since the recipient is a senior planner who receives numerous emails. An in-depth analysis of the email reveals that the key messages are being lost as the sender of the email is digressing from the fundamental points. Ideally, the essence of writing to the senior planner is to be appreciative of being granted an opportunity for being part of the organization and requesting a possible permanent position in it. Instead, the author diverges from the main point when he seeks to suggest the appropriate projects that may be adopted by the council using an informal tone. Thus, this email does not convey any serious intent on the part of the author towards the recipient.

The proper email should be the following:

From: Rob Smith

Sent to: Cynthia Jones

CC: Head of Department at Rose City Council

Subject Line: Chance for Work Experience

Dear Cynthia,

I would like to thank you for offering me the opportunity to be part of your team at Rose City Council. I thoroughly enjoyed the experience, especially by being actively involved in the projects undertaken by the council. It is my hope that my input was much appreciated as well. I believe that such exposure is vital in improving my competencies in terms of work experience. As a result, I graduated recently and wish to request that you consider me for the job vacancy announced by the Department at Rose City Council.

I am looking forward to a positive response from you.

Kind regards,

Rob Smith

References

Bansler, J. P., & Havn, E. (2003). Technology-use mediation: Making sense of electronic communication in an organizational context. In Proceedings of the 2003 international ACM SIGGROUP conference on Supporting group work (pp. 135-143).

Bharadwaj, A. (2014). Planning internal communication profile for organizational effectiveness. IIM Kozhikode Society & Management Review3(2), 183-192.

Dabbish, L. A., Kraut, R. E., Fussell, S., & Kiesler, S. (2005). Understanding email use: predicting action on a message. In Proceedings of the SIGCHI conference on Human factors in computing systems (pp. 691-700).

Downs, C. W., & Adrian, A. D. (2012). Assessing organizational communication: Strategic communication audits. Guilford Press.

Evans, S. (2012). Designing email tasks for the Business English classroom: Implications from a study of Hong Kong’s key industries. English for Specific Purposes31(3), 202-212.

Kalla, H. K. (2005). Integrated internal communications: A multidisciplinary perspective. Corporate Communications: An International Journal, 10(4), 302–314. doi:10.1108/13563280510630106

Lawson, C., Gill, R., Feekery, A. & Witsel, M. (2019). Communication skills for business professionals. Cambridge University Press.

Mazmanian, M., Orlikowski, W. J., & Yates, J. (2013). The autonomy paradox: The implications of mobile email devices for knowledge professionals. Organization Science24(5), 1337-1357.

Ramsay, J., & Renaud, K. (2012). Using insights from email users to inform organisational email management policy. Behaviour & Information Technology31(6), 587-603.https://doi.org/10.1080/0144929X.2010.517271

Turnage, A. K. (2007). Email flaming behaviors and organizational conflict. Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication13(1), 43-59.

Hastings, S. O., & Payne, H. J. (2013). Expressions of dissent in email: Qualitative insights into uses and meanings of organizational dissent. The Journal of Business Communication50(3), 309-331. https://doi.org/10.1177/0021943613487071

 

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