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AFTER WRITING

Once your message is keyed in, you should take the time to review what you have said. Remember responsible e-mail users work with an e-mail buddy inside or outside the e-mmunity to help them compose messages and give feedback. Here is your opportunity to make sure you and your e-mail Buddy proofread to check your message for:

  • Spelling — Use your spell check if it is part of your e-mail word processing program. You could also check your spelling carefully or have someone else proofread your message.

  • Punctuation — Even though e-mail sometimes is a bit more “chatty” than other forms of business communication, you still must use punctuation to help the reader navigate through the message. Punctuation serves a purpose and helps make the meaning of your message clear. Also be sure not to overuse punctuation, even when you want to make a point.

  • Grammar and usage — Take the time to make sure your e-mail message is grammatically correct and that it makes sense. Use your grammar check, if you have one, and read your message out loud. You'd be surprised how easily you can catch errors using this straightforward, simple check of your own words.

  • Accuracy — Make sure you have included all the correct names, dates, numbers, e-mail addresses, and other details. You will cause a lot of confusion if you send incorrect or incomplete information to a customer, vendor, or coworker.

  • Organization — Check to see that your purpose is clearly stated up front and that your question or required action is the last part of your message. Make sure that the way you have laid out the details makes sense and that your message flows in a logical way and is easy to follow.

  • Formatting — Make sure you have used enough paragraphing, spacing, and bulleting to allow important details to stand out. Be careful not to bury information in a blob of text. Use lists, headings, and subheadings. Remember, most readers will just skim their e-mail, so make your message easy for them to skim.


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