Without a nice greeting (Hello, Hi, G’Day, Hey) at the beginning of your e-mail, more times than not your content will be perceived as demanding or terse. When you call someone on the phone, you don’t just start talking without a greeting. In off-line letters you do the same. Why is it then that in e-mail that some feel this little courtesy doesn’t apply?
There are those that think general writing rules and skills do not come into play with e-mail. It’s an informal communication tool, yes, but that doesn’t negate the need for courtesy. Nor does it mean that you skip the steps necessary to you being perceived as someone who is a pleasure to communicate with.
Without a greeting:
I want you to follow-up on our conversation at the Chamber meeting and make sure that everyone noted received their copy. John
With a greeting:
I want you to follow-up on our conversation at the Chamber meeting and make sure that everyone noted received their copy. Thank you!
See what a big difference a little greeting makes? Of course, the added “Thank You!” is always a nice touch when asking for someone to do something on your behalf.
Over time, if you refuse to use a greeting, you end up having the other side cringe when they see your name in their inbox wondering what bossy request you may have next. This perception can easily be avoided by simply taking the time to add a little: “Hello,”.