The Key to Impressing your Boss with IM and Email
The Key to Impressing your Boss with Instant Messaging and Email
You’re working a new career position, enjoying each day and doing everything you can to move up the corporate ladder and still maintain your active social life. Sound like you? Here’s a quick office communications tip that will always impress your boss and coworkers. Sprucing up your instant messaging and email communications is a quick win for improving your career outlook.
Let’s face it, in today’s world we are pretty swamped with messages. Most of us are often multi-tasking while carrying on a conversation or two over text. Most of the time the conversation we’re having isn’t our main focus so taking text shortcuts is necessary.
When in a professional environment, it can be helpful to realize that every time we interact with someone it’s an opportunity to show off who we are. The key to moving forward and getting ahead in just about every career is being a responsible, capable individual that your boss can rely on. Taking the time to properly write out instant messages and emails is one small way to show that you are a capable individual.
Ask yourself, do my communications reveal that I’m rushed and stressed or well thought-out and prepared? You may even be sending the wrong message inadvertently by using some of the same off-work texting habits while at work.
Apply these steps to get your office communications shining in no time. Here are a few of the best tips to keep in mind while crafting an instant message or email.
To begin with, be mindful of the golden rule of office communications which is: to make your message as easy to read as possible for the person receiving it. Let them do less work, and you put in the extra effort. That’s what great employees are noted for, correct? With that goal in mind most of the tips come pretty naturally.
- Start with a greeting.
Just like a face to face conversation, starting off with a “Hello _______,” (insert person’s name.) This communicates who you are addressing very clearly and sets a tone for the message.
- Use correct grammar and punctuation, especially in emails.
This really helps show that your message is worth reading and that you respect the person who is reading it. Of course there is some leeway with IM’ing (instant messaging) shortcuts, but keep in mind the goal is always putting your best foot forward.
- Create a visually appealing message.
Taking a few moments to format your message will really help with ease of reading and will show readers that it is a professional communication. Wherever possible use bulleted or numbered lists, and when sending URL links clean them up so they are more meaningful to the viewer. To do this you can usually create a hyperlink and choose what the display text reads so the viewer knows what they are clicking on.
- Use concise, short business writing.
If needed look into some more detailed business writing tips or take a course on business writing. The main goal is to say what you are trying to say in as few direct words as possible. Avoid flowery, overly descriptive language.
- Proof at least once before sending (The best practice is to proof twice).
A quick way to proof your message is to read over it once for grammar and spelling. And then read it over again, looking at punctuation and capitalization.
- Be aware of communication preferences and use your status to tell others if you’re away.
One of the major downfalls of IM and email is that you don’t always know if someone is there to receive it. Being upfront with this information can help you reduce miscommunication and mistakes.
- If needed, break the norm.
Don’t be afraid to start using good communication techniques in your office even if that’s not currently your standard. I am pretty sure no one is going to complain that your messages are more clear and that they never misunderstand them. It can only help you to be seen as the shining star you are.
There you go. You can start making great impressions with instant messaging and email today. Work your way into your boss’s favorites list and set yourself up to take on more responsibility and income.
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