We have all been there: Finished composing an email, hit ‘send’ and then (gasp) realized that the conversation attached to the end of our email was not intended for our recipient’s eyes. It’s an awful sensation! The daisy chain, the previous email messages lingering at the bottom of the every email, can be a friend or terrible foe depending on the situation and circumstances. Here are a few helpful dos and don’ts to avoid uncomfortable, and sometimes relationship ending, email gaffs.
Do review all of the previous messages before you compose your email. Leave appended only what is relevant to the email you are sending. If it feels like too much background for you to read, then you are probably safe removing it from your email.
Do compose the body of the email, after removing the old email trail, but before you decide on a subject line.
Do reserve blind copy for mass emails, when you want to maintain the privacy of multiple recipients’ email addresses. Consider forwarding sent emails to additional recipients, instead of including them in the BCC field.
Don’t write the subject until after you have composed the email. Your subject lines will be more concise and relevant.
Don’t complete the ‘To’ field until you are ready, completely ready, to hit send. This ensures that emails never fly too soon.
Don’t forget to check the subject line for spelling and grammar errors – spell check does not review subject lines, and they create the email first impression.
In the unlikely event that something slips through email that should not, use the ‘Message Recall’ feature and include a simple “Please disregard the last email” in the body.