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July 13, 2011

Organize Emails for Quick Response

Do you find people are slow to respond to your emails? If so, here are some quick tips to make it easier for people to read and reply. 

  1. Write from the Top Down. Start with the most important piece of information the reader needs to know and end with the least important. This is called the inverted pyramid. It ensures readers will get what they need to know even if they stop reading.
  2. Use a Dynamic Subject Line. The subject line is the most important part of the email. Make sure it indicates the content of the email, highlights any urgent matter and sets the reader’s expectations. 
  3. Use a Keyword in the Subject Line. A keyword is the first one or two words of the subject line that tells readers what you want them to do. Some keywords are: Decision Needed, Review by [date], Approval Needed and Action. The rest of the subject line expands on the keyword.
  4. Use a Signature Box. The signature box tells the reader who you are and adds to your credibility. Unless your department wants anonymity for employees, make sure your signature box has your name, title, phone and fax numbers for additional information.
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