Welcome to the Emailogic blog
At Emailogic we believe everyone should be a brilliant email user. Training in email etiquette creates huge productivity gains that mean staff have more time, reduce email traffic and communicate more effectively. And it is not difficult to achieve - as hundreds of thousands of Emailogic graduates have proven.
In a scene from the “The Office” USA, the boss Michael Scott (played by Steve Carrell) discusses his counter-intuitive use of the word “urgent” in his email subject lines.
“OK,” he explains, “I mark all e-mails as Urgent A, Urgent B, Urgent C or Urgent D. Urgent A is the most important. Urgent D, you don’t even really have to worry about.”
Joking aside, this raises the question of how to respond to emails marked as “urgent”.
Over-use of the prefix Urgent will leave you crying wolf – and your recipients will be trained not to place any more emphasis on your urgent than your non urgent emails – so be careful how often you use it.
When sending emails that are “Urgent” do not forget to craft the emails well and do not forget an appropriate (polite) salutation and sign off.
“Urgent” emails are not an excuse to be rude so remember the fundamentals of email etiquette here.
All in all Emailogic advice is use sparingly. If something is really urgent – pick up the phone instead.
A Survey by Institute of Leadership & Management reveals the nation’s workplace pet peeves – with email named in the top three.
Unnecessary “all-staff” emails was cited as one of the biggest bugbears for UK workers and 56% took issue with co-workers sending an email, rather than talking to them, despite sitting opposite.
Charles Elvin, Chief Executive of the ILM said: “When office-based teams work in close proximity for long periods of time, we see that seemingly trivial issues can grow disproportionately, if left unchecked, and begin to cause upset and resentment.
“By proactively dealing with potentially divisive issues such as excessive e-mails managers can ensure they don’t grow to affect teamwork and morale. In most cases, the best first step will be to give some prompt and constructive feedback to the individuals concerned.”
A poorly thought out email sent to a colleague sitting opposite may take a few seconds to send but can cause a huge amount of resentment.
Emails can be read quite differently to how they were intended.
Sometimes a face-to-face interaction, or a quick phone call, can be more appropriate.
It becomes evident that these small things – such as emails between colleagues – can lead to bigger problems.
But what is also clear is that these issues can be avoided if only we started to communicate with each other about HOW we communicate.
So why not start the conversation with your colleagues. Talk about what is working and what does not work about the way that you all use email. And agree new ways of working – that work.
Start to communicate about your communication – it will save you and your teams a lot of time, stress and unnecessary ill-feeling.
Many firms with multiple offices are turning to virtual technologies to deliver internal training.
Significant savings in time and travel expenses coupled with the potent reality that webinar training is stable, inexpensive, powerful and accessible, makes this method a ‘no brainer’.
If your firm is not yet using live webinar technology, it soon will be.
A recent survey by Towards Maturity revealed that virtual learning has increased steadily across all sectors over the last 12 months with use of web based classrooms up by 46%.
Whilst many training teams want to start delivering live virtual training – many lack the confidence and necessary new skills to do so successfully. So they hold off – which is effectively wasting time and precious resources.
So what are the new ‘virtual’ skills required by trainers?
These can be neatly split into three main areas:
All experienced trainers are skilled in facilitating groups in face to face environments. They need to learn how to achieve the same effect and impact in a live virtual environment. This means learning how to engage and interact with delegates whilst, at the same time, manipulating the webinar tools and features available in order to control and drive that environment. Ultimately they need to give their delegates a valuable and powerful learning experience.
- Content Design
Webinar content needs to be designed for a live virtual medium – it relies on the use of graphics and is often more heavily slide based. Evaluation tools and tests need to be designed to boost and enrich the learning experience. Interactive exercises, feedback and questioning need to be incorporated into the content to create an engaging experience which helps embed the learning.
- Using the Technology
There are many software tools with similar features available provided by Citrix, Microsoft, Cisco and others. The set-up of webinar sessions, the evaluation and the use of tools has to be mastered so the trainer can confidently create a live webinar environment that sings!
Also webinars needed to be planned carefully to ensure that all delegates have the correct technical resources to participate.
Often the presenter will need to be assisted by a technical colleague who ensures that delegates receive their logins and can access the training without any problems – leaving the presenter free to concentrate on delivery and maintaining the training pace and momentum.
Emailogic are experts in delivering training via webinar to clients across the globe and are partners with Citrix – makers of the GoTo suite of virtual training products.
The Emailogic one day “Webinar Masterclass” brings together all the skills and techniques a Trainer needs to design content and facilitate successful webinar training.
For more details call the Emailogic team on 01452 886 556.
A series of tweets posted several years ago came back to haunt the Government’s Youth Police and Crime Commissioner recently and caused huge embarrassment.
This not only showed a remarkable lack of awareness as to the upset that this series of tweets would cause but was also an example of the longevity of messages in the public domain.
It is a sobering lesson and one that everyone should be aware of, namely what we write in emails or post on social networks can still be used against us in litigation many years later.
This is something which we cover in our email training – emails are a permanent record and even if you delete them from your sent items a copy will exist somewhere which could potentially upset others or embarrass you.
Some email etiquette tips:
- Do not send anything in an email that you would not be prepared to say to someone’s face
- Re-read your emails before you send them
- Remember that emails are a permanent record
- An email which you write from your company account has the same legal weight as a letter sent on company letterhead
Read the news story here.
The London office of large global bank recently commissioned a survey of 143 of its staff to find out where they spend most of their time.
Managing email was the top answer taking up 170 minutes of the working day. (These results would put the bank’s staff in the top 15% of all Emailogic clients in terms of time spent on email.)
As well as being heavy email users they also discovered the staff spent a lot of time managing large volumes of information.
The third highest proportion of the working day was spent in meetings – and in some cases unproductive or unnecessary meetings which they did not need to attend.
These results – while quite startling – will not be unusual.
Most companies will have the same issues: email and information overload combine with unproductive meetings to sap productivity and increase staff stress.
Why is this still the case, in an age where communications are faster and there is more focus on productivity than ever before?
Because, using email professionally and having productive meetings are skills which need to be taught. Do not assume that because email is prevalent that we all know how to use most effectively and efficiently.
Fortunately for the bank and for all Emailogic clients – our short sharp training interventions are available – and are proven to work.
Emailogic training on email and meetings have a 14 year proven track record of saving time, reducing stress and producing measurable results.
How often do you find yourself in another meeting thinking “Why am I here? This is not a good use of my time”
You are not alone.
Emailogic were surprised by the results of some research undertaken recently within our client base:
- Managers spend 45 hours every month in meetings
- 56% of meetings started late or ran over time
- 61% of meetings had no Agenda
Focused and productive meetings can be achieved easily – by using some common sense tips:
1. Agenda – it needs clear objectives with realistic timescales, circulated well in advance.
2. Attendees – who absolutely needs to be there? Do they need to be there for the whole meeting?
3. Attentiveness – insist that mobiles and laptops are switched OFF
4. Actions – send minutes out within 2 days: what is to be done, by whom and by when.
If this sounds like common sense but not common practice, why not invest in some training? Given the number of meetings managers attend, this training will be time well spent and the quality and outcomes of your meetings will improve as a result.
If you are a decision maker for this type of training request a place on the next available webinar session.
Some more alarming email stats for last year have just been published.
In 2012 the number of words composed in email was 41,368 per person – which is the equivalent of the average novel.
So if we are all writing the equivalent of an email novel every year – shouldn’t we think about our readers?
1. Title – we know that a Novel needs a good title to catch the reader’s eye – and to ensure it stands out on a very crowded bookshelf. The same applies to email –every email you send needs to have a meaningful subject line.
2. Plot – All the best novels have a fully developed plot line – emails need to make sense too. Make your emails short and to the point and avoid long waffly emails that do not make sense. No one will buy them!
3. Theme – emails should not be like detective novels – don’t keep the recipient guessing about what the email means – or what they are expected to do! Always make it clear what you would like the recipient of your emails to do. Reveal this at the beginning not the end.
4. Spelling and Grammar – novelists have Editors who ensure that the chapters are the correct length, add sense to the plot and that each word is spelled correctly. Be your own email editor and always check your emails before you send them.
Train yourself to create brilliant emails every time.
Some more alarming email stats for 2012 have just been published and the problem of email overload shows no sign of reversing.
The average worker spends more than 25% of the working day handling email, according to a 2012 study by global management consulting firm McKinsey & Company.
That puts it second only to completing “role-specific tasks,” which takes up 39% of a worker’s time.
With these facts in mind it is no surprise that 80% of business professionals admit to deleting some work related emails without fully reading them.
The possible fallout of this behaviour can lead to: missed deadlines, mis-communications, more irrelevant traffic and the inability to solve problems using email.
We are all responsible for ensuring that the messages we transmit make sense.
This means using informative subject lines, writing short, clear messages that are easy to respond to – deadlines and timescales all add value to the emails we send.
And if you receive an email that does not make sense or can be improved in any way – why not offer some polite coaching to the sender?
Successful communication relies on 100% responsibility on both sides – and given that over 65% of our business communication happens over email it is worth creating a culture of continuous improvement when it comes to email best practice.
These are fundamental points that underpin any good email training.
What lessons can your team learn from this?
For Training Professionals it is vital that the training courses provided for staff fulfil some key criteria:
- Non statutory training must be in response to a defined need. Often this need comes out of the result of staff or customer satisfaction surveys or appraisals
- Training delivery must be flexible to suit the needs of the workforce who may be dispersed nationally or internationally
- Training delivery needs to be high quality and consistent
Emailogic train trainers to deliver our award winning email etiquette course in an action packed one day train the trainer workshop.
Over 200 in-house trainers are now able to deliver professional email etiquette training under license from Emailogic. Organisations such as The Department of Health, L’Oréal, HSBC, The University of York and QVC have seen the benefits of offering this training to their staff.
Trainers learn how to deliver email training to the same outstanding standard as Emailogic trainers do – and they achieve the same results. They also learn powerful new facilitation techniques and skills.
Are staff in your organisation spending hours every day glued to their email?
Do you want your trainers to have some award winning training content that will change the culture of email use?
If you answered “Yes” to these questions, then speak to Emailogic now.
You can see what results our clients have achieved by clicking here.
One simple rule to improve email management which has an immediate impact is to switch off all visual or audible alerts.
This simple action immediately puts the email user back in control of their inbox . It encourages email users to put aside dedicated time to manage their inbox, not to be interrupted or obsessed by the beeps or flashes which warn them of incoming mail.
The key word here is control – it has been proven time and time again that we are addicted to checking email.
Concentration suffers as we constantly switch between tasks, losing focus and reducing personal productivity.
Another impact on business productivity is that poor email management will have a negative affect on the performance of servers and hence other network users.
This often manifests itself as emails stored lazily in inboxes and messages sent to large groups unnecessarily.
In certain sectors, such as property, there are additional pressures due to the business being information heavy – large attachments and poor discipline using archiving systems and clearing unimportant traffic.
Any professional should know (or be educated) that:
- workplace behaviour based in addiction will be unproductive
- Outlook was not designed to be a repository for emails