Communication Tip – Write the message of the email BEFORE the subject and the recipients’ email addresses

In every email service that I have used so far,

1) the address fields are on the top

2) the subject field is in the middle

3) and then the text editor for the message is at the end.

However, when I write most emails, I usually write these 3 things in reverse.  This has several important advantages.

Email on laptop

Image courtesy of Pixabay on Pexels.

A) It prevents me from accidentally sending an email to a recipient before I finish writing it.  This is especially important if I am sending the email to multiple recipients.  It’s bad enough to send a poorly written email; it’s even worse to send it to many people at once.

B) The best subject line usually becomes clear AFTER I write the body of the email.

C) It gives me time to think about who should receive the email, and who should NOT receive the email.  (The latter is just as important as the former, if not more important.)

D) It enforces me to proofread my email before I send it.  The act of writing a subject line and the recipients’ email addresses forces me to realize the finality of composing the email, and this acts as a useful reminder for proofreading.

 

This practice has saved me from sending incomplete or badly written emails on numerous occasions, so I highly encourage it, especially to those who use email on a regular basis.

I wish that designers of email interfaces would recognize the value of this logic and present the body of the email first, followed by the subject field, and then the address fields.  However, I have not encountered such an interface.  Thus, in the meanwhile, I need to resort to my own discipline and habit to enforce this practice.  I encourage you to do the same.

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