Email…. How did businesses survive without it? I know that I would be lost without having Outlook opened all day on my computer, and on my phone as well. Instant contact to friends, families and work colleagues is of huge importance to all of us, and something that we now expect.Email SymbolSo how should we differentiate how we email friends and family, to that of emailing work colleagues, sales leads or prospective employees? Should there be a difference? Or is it just a matter of emailing in the same tone no matter who the recipient is?

In this post we will give you some of the key tips on how business people should format their own emails in a business environment. But firstly, here are some interesting facts related to email.

First Ever Email

This has a rather protracted history due to the development of early network computers, but the first ever networked email message is credited to a man called Ray Tomlinson. In 1971 this first “real” email was sent. Unfortunately the content of the first ever email has now been forgotten, but theories out there attest the content to be along the lines of “QWERTYUIOP”. There was no call for email at the time, Ray just thought it would be a “neat idea”.

The Most Common Email Password

In 2009, when the details of 10,000 Hotmail accounts were published the most popular password, and a worrying one at that was “123456”. This was again reflected by the Gawker attack of 2010, when the “123456” password topped the list. I feel reassured knowing my password is a long protracted combination of numbers and letters.


How Many Emails Are Sent Per Day?

Research completed by the Radicati Group in 2010 extrapolated that on average around 294 billion emails are sent on a daily basis around the world. That is a lot of sharing of thoughts, information and no doubt links to YouTube videos of cats looking cute.

Business Email Etiquette

Okay, so we have looked through some fun facts, but let’s explore what best practice standards you should endeavor to be applying to your emails when in the workplace environment.If you have any others to add then please comment. Thanks has to go to Judith Kallos for these excellent points regarding email etiquette, read her full post regarding 101 Email Etiquette Tips for more excellent pointers.


1 – Address your contact with the appropriate level of formality and make sure you spelled their name correctly.

2 – Spell check – emails with typos are simply not taken seriously.

3 – Be sure you are including all relevant details or information necessary to understand your request or point of view. Generalities can many times cause confusion and unnecessary back and fourths.

4 – Keep emails brief and to the point. Save long conversations for the old fashioned telephone.

5 – Think of your business email as though it was on your business letterhead and you’ll never go wrong!

6 – If you cannot respond to an email promptly, at the very least email back confirming your receipt and when the sender can expect your response.

7 – Formality is in place as a courtesy and reflects respect. Assume the highest level of formality with new email contacts until the relationship dictates otherwise. Refrain from getting too informal too soon in your email communications.

8 – When replying to an email with multiple recipients noted in the To: or Cc: fields, remove the addresses of those who your reply does not apply to.

9 – When replying to emails always respond promptly and edit out unnecessary information from the post you are responding to.

10 – Never send anyone an email they need to unsubscribe from, when they didn’t subscribe in the first place!