+44 (0) 1489 884 150 fareham@nettl.com

Emails are efficient and convenient but can be very impersonal.

We communicate with others using our voices, intonations and language, our bodies and our eyes. Over email, we are stripping 4 of those mediums of communication out, leaving us with just words on a screen.

However poetic your word skills, tone can be hard to convey in text. So where possible, video call or FaceTime. Skype, Zoom and Google Meet (Hangouts) are all free to use.

However, it’s not always possible or convenient for everyone. So here are six tips on improving your communication when you can’t get any face to face action

1 Use emojis

No, we’re not trying to be cool, we’ll use them appropriately. But they can be a fantastic way to convey emotion when we can’t speak face-to-face.

2 Assume positive intent

Especially now when we lack many of those mediums for communication, to keep ourselves sane and our relationships healthy, assume positive intent. If a message reads a bit off or something feels not right, read it assuming the best possible interpretation and get on a call with the person to clarify.

3 Over clarify

When not face-to-face, explain what you’re asking or what you want as though you were speaking with a 5-year-old…from Mars. Like we assume positive intent, we should also assume complete ignorance. Remember to explain why you’re doing something or asking someone to do it.

4 Be succinct

While not wanting to skimp on the clarity, it’s just as important not to waffle on. Nothing makes the shoulders sag quite like a very lengthy email. So include all the details, but be succinct. Be as clear as possible without using unnecessary words.

5 Give it one last read

There are some benefits to email over telephone of course. Documenting what has been said to avoid misunderstanding springs to mind. But one of the main benefits is the opportunity to rework what you’ve said.

Don’t waste the chance to re-read and edit your message to make it better. Everyone’s in a rush but one good email can save time in the long run. After editing, be sure to give it one last proofread. Oh, and don’t forget to actually attach that attachment.

6 Be patient

Things may take slightly longer than before. If something is particularly urgent, then maybe right now email is perhaps not the best approach (if it ever was). A phone call would be better, as you will have the opportunity to first learn about their workload and headspace, before asking for help with yours.

#remoteworking #workfromhome #emails #tips #nettl