Do you recently remember reading or sending an e-mail that contained embarrassing grammatical errors?
In today’s fast-paced environment, e-mail has become the tool of choice for business communication. Although most people who send multiple e-mails daily have discovered their e-mail editor that will run the grammar and spell-check automatically on the text of the emails before sending, the obvious errors are not always caught. Some people may think this is just common sense, but how many of you really do this? How many e-mails have you seen that are 100% error free? The following three steps can help catch the majority of e-mail errors and may save you some embarrassment.
Slow down. S l o w d o w n. S l o w d o w n. In most cases, you need to send this email or memo, and you need to send it now (if not yesterday). Typing faster does not usually mean typing more accurately. Is it worth your reputation to send it a few seconds or minutes sooner, if it is full of errors? It may help to speak what you’re typing to keep you on track.
Reread what you have written before and after using the spelling and grammar checker. How long would it actually take you to reread what you have written? Or if the email or memo is going to multiple people, even have a trusted co-worker reread what you have written? How many e-mails have you seen that are 100% error free? The grammar checker may not always catch errors such as typing “hear” in place of “here.” An example sentence that made it through the grammar and spellchecker with no errors: Your not having to many errors hears. You may think you would never write a sentence with that many glaringly obvious mistakes, but how many times have you seen “your” used in place of “you’re” or “to” in place of “two” or “too” or vice-versa?
Double-check the “to:” and the “cc:” line for correct e-mail addresses. How many times have you accidentally hit send, and as the e-mail passed by your eyes for the last time you realized you were sending it to the wrong person or mailing list? If you have ever tried recalling a message like this, it usually does not work! This is a very common mistake, especially with all of the conveniences of the e-mail tools that remember and save names and e-mail addresses for you. While you’re at it, you may want to check the subject line also! If the subject is not clear, the e-mail may not even be read by whom it is intended.
Gameplan Resources is an Arizona-based company that assists business leaders with operations, personnel management and more.