Clear emails that are free from grammatical errors, typos, and missing attachments are an important component of professional communication. But in today’s fast-paced work environments, it’s easy to skip the editing step before hitting ‘reply all’ on a company-wide email.
If nothing else, taking the extra time to proofread your work will undoubtedly save you the embarrassment of a potentially awkward conversation with management over the differences between ‘to’, ‘too’ and ‘two’.
And if you’re not convinced yet, here are 5 reasons to proofread your emails (best to read BEFORE your next company-wide email goes out):
Like many reputable employers, here at Robertson we screen candidates in search of careers with the college based on their initial email communication.
If there are spelling errors and glaring mistakes in an email where someone is seeking employment, this does not speak well for the way they will communicate in a job setting. Additionally, a well structured and edited email demonstrates you care about the subject matter and should be taken seriously by coworkers and clients.
2. Costly Errors
While most typos in everyday email correspondence can be forgiven, some errors can have serious ramifications for your employer or even your own reputation.
If for example, you misspell an important client’s name or include someone in an email that shouldn’t be seeing the correspondence, you could lose your company business, thus impacting the bottom line.
While there are many reasons why we proofread, one of the most important is to ensure our communication sounds the way we intend it to. Unlike a phone call or an in-person conversation, tone is difficult to express over an email.
This is why it’s key to reread your email and decide if any of your word choices could be perceived as rude, backhanded or condescending. If it’s a very important email, consider having a coworker read it over to ensure the language you’ve chosen is appropriate for the message you’re trying to communicate.
Proofreading emails for clarity refers to the process of ensuring our correspondence makes sense, not only grammatically, but also structurally.
Is there an opportunity to better explain what you’re trying to say? Should you try using more plain language and less company jargon for an outside audience? Is the ‘ask’ from the recipient of the email obvius? These are just a few of the clarity considerations you may apply to an email you’ve composed.
For prospective and current students, as well as alumni of Robertson, we offer career counseling resources, including resume and cover letter writing that will help ensure your most important communication – that with future employers – is clear and error-free.
Why proofread when most email platforms have built-in grammar and spelling editors? Because a lot of our mistakes aren’t necessarily detectable by computer programs.
For example, if you’re communicating a fact in an email and you over or under-exaggerate the fact, the editor won’t be able to detect the mistake.
This is why proofreading for accuracy is key, because only you know the full context of the message you’re trying to communicate. Again, this is where support from a trusted coworker may come in handy. The more eyes reading over an email for factual accuracy, the better!
Now that we’ve covered the fundamentals of why proofreading is so important, we hope you’ll take the time to read over your correspondence before it’s sent off to important stakeholders, including your mom and dad!
If you’re interested in career support of any kind, please don’t hesitate to reach out to our Career Services team who are well-equipped to support with any of your proofreading needs, and more!