Email in the Time of Corona

With a nod to the book Love in the Time of Cholera, what about Email in the Time of Corona?

During the past two months, many organizations have begun to lament the loss of professionalism in writing. In a nutshell, we are becoming overly personal and casual in our workplace emails. So, how can we communicate compassion and understanding for those undergoing hardships while maintaining an appropriate businesslike tone?

To bolster your professional presence through the written word, be mindful of these top seven email habits that can undermine your credibility from the webinar course: Before You Press Send: Write It So They Read It.

It’s not that you want to come across as uptight or aloof; it’s simply a gut check to make sure you’re not oversharing and blurring the line between personal and professional.

  1. Careless grammar and spelling mistakes

We would never print on company letterhead some of the hastily written messages we send through email. Just because we’re replying to emails in bed doesn’t mean our style should suffer.

  1. Emojis

For now, we should hold off on inserting smilies and wink-y faces as they can connote a too casual or insensitive tone given the current culture.

  1. Stale clichés and overused expressions

Guilty as charged. I need to work on this. Even I have fallen back on expressions such as “in these difficult and uncertain times” and “wishing you good health and happiness.” I have to remind myself to write the way I speak. In this case, a sincere “hope you are doing well today” is more natural.


This still is considered the electronic equivalent of yelling at someone.

  1. Reply All

Emails temporarily have replaced hallway conversations and chats over the cubicle wall. For most of us, email volume has increased; therefore, we really don’t want to be copied on unnecessary messages.

  1. Forgotten subject lines

Not including a subject line is the equivalent of leaving the headline off of a newspaper article. Use the formula Reason + Subject to compose a professional complete subject line for every message you send. Remember, people make decisions to open and act upon your email based on the sender and the subject line.

  1. Forgotten attachments

Attach it first, even before you compose the subject line, body copy, and recipient details.


To customize a keynote or professional development session that will have your audience laughing and learning, contact Mandi Stanley.

Certified Speaking Professional Mandi Stanley works with business leaders who want to boost their professional image by becoming better speakers and writers through interactive high-content keynotes, breakout sessions, workshops, technical writing seminars, and fun proofreading classes. 

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