3. Writing and receiving emails has become an
inevitable part of everyday life, both in private
and business correspondence. When writing an
email to your family or friends, you may be as
casual as you want. But there are some
business email rules and that everyone is
required to follow, even if you are a non-native
4. 1. Subject Line Says a Lot
No doubt, a subject line is the first thing a
recipient reads. The decision of whether or
not to open an email depends highly on how
the subject line looks. Make sure the subject
line is simple, specific, but catchy. Use key
words that briefly summarize the content of
5. 2. Start Your Email with Greetings
There are many variations of greetings that
you can start your email with, but the most
standard ones are:
Dear Firstname Lastname
Dear Mr./Ms. Lastname
Dear Mr./Ms. Firstname Lastname
Dear Dr. Lastname
6. 3. Say Thank You
If a person has replied to your email, you
should thank him/her by writing “Thank
you for your (prompt) reply“. It is
important to start an email on a positive
note, as it creates a good first impression
7. 4. Be Clear and Precise
No matter how complex your email appears to be, try to
define its purpose clearly at the very beginning of the
email by writing “I am contacting you as…” or “I am
writing to you in reference to/regarding…”. It helps the
reader understand the purpose of your email.
Being clear and precise is important, as most business
people have no time to read all emails they receive. Being
specific about the purpose of your email will save them
time and will be much appreciated.
8. 5. Save Someone’s Time
To save everyone’s precious time, keep your
emails specific and concise. It is also a good
idea to split the body of the email into several
paragraphs, based on the topics you raise. You
can also use bullet-points, which makes it easy
9. 6. Informal vs Formal
Your manner of speaking depends on who you are talking
to. It usually comes naturally and is based on your
relationship with an interlocutor.
It applies to emails as well.
Here are some examples demonstrating different ways to
write the same thing:
Informal: Can you …?
Formal: I was wondering if you could…
Informal: Sorry, I can’t meet you. I’m busy that day.
Formal: I am afraid I will not be available to make it that
10. 7. Everybody Likes Sandwiches or Don’t Avoid the Negative
Delivering bad news is never easy! But it’s something you have to
do sometimes, when working in a business environment.
A good way to do it is to provide a reader with neutral or positive
information first. Only then move to the negative part, explaining
what caused it and why it’s important. The final part of the
message should provide a potential solution to the problem or an
optimistic note. It is like making a sandwich!
Your goal here is not to hide or minimize the scope of the
problem, but to leave the reader with the impression that you care
or you are taking action to fix it.
11. 8. The Last Vow
Before ending your email, thank the
recipient one more time by saying “Thank
you for your consideration.” It is also very
common to add “should you have any
questions, please do not hesitate contact
me” or “I look forward to hearing from
12. 9. Write a Closing to Your Email
As you have already constructed your email beautifully, it
requires a beautiful closing too. There are many ways to
do so, and again, it depends on the formality of
relationships between you and the reader.
Choose the most suitable phrase before typing your
– Yours sincerely, (when you know the name of the
–Best regards, or Kind regards, (Formal, Most common)
– Take care, Thank you, or Have a nice day (Less Formal)
13. 10. Proofread Your Email
Don’t send it yet! It is very important to reread
your email carefully before hitting the send
button. Check if there are any typos,
grammatical or punctuation errors, or
inappropriate word usage.
It’s always good to ask someone else to
proofread it for you. Remember that you
cannot get the email back once you send it!