Along with advent of Internet came a new way of communicating called e-mail. If you spend a lot of time online and especially if you're running a web based business, odds are your main tool for communication is through e-mail.
Now e-mail is a wonderful thing. Don't get me wrong, but unlike telephone or face to face communication, if you don't watch your words you can easily be mis-understood. It's all too easy to offend or even hurt someone's feelings just by what you type, even if that wasn't your intention at all.
Allow me to explain: When you're on phone, your voice sets stage for what you're trying to say. You raise your tone when angry and laugh or giggle when joking, so it's easy for other person to understand main focus of your message. When someone screams at you on telephone, you know immediately they're angry, that or they just forgot to take their Prozac that day.
Face to face communication is another way we converse. Your body positioning, facial expressions and tone all work together to get your message understood.
But, e-mail is different. You need to remember there is no voice tone, facial expression or body language, making it harder to get your message across way you intend. So next time you're in a hurry to respond to an e-mail keep following tips in mind:
1) If you say something in a message and don't want it taken too seriously, add a well-known acronym "LOL," which stands for "laughing out loud," or type "just kidding."
2) Never verbally assault someone with obscenities or name calling, even if they attack first. Just because it's e-mail and you can't see person face to face, remember there's a living breathing human being at other end of that e-mail address who has feelings. Besides, you never know where that email may end up later on, which could embarrass you.