The lack of verbal and nonverbal social cues

Any email message we send has the potential to be read in the wrong context, or misinterpreted entirely by the recipient. Even if we have smiley faces in the email, it is no match for actual face-to-face, video, or telephonic conversations, which, apart from our words, also showcase our empathy and earnestness.

Compared to a face-face conversation, an email is just a bunch of words that once sent, are out of our control.

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Due to the limitations and the multifacetedness of language, emails often lead to miscommunication, guessed intentions, or total awareness of what the person is trying to convey.

The problem is further complicated if you are writing to someone whom you haven’t met in person.

These types of emails (with the entire email is a sentence in the subject line, with no email body, just the signature)are usually sent by a very direct person, that either feels very busy or that the problem can't be solved simply in an email, so it's too much for them to go into it all.
If you respond with more than 2 sentences, they are probably not going to read it, so you should just get on the phone or get over there in person.

‘Please Advise’

Writing ‘Please Advice’ at the end of the email is a way to shift the burden on the recipient, and then sit back until one is provided with the full instructions.

If this annoys you, you can inquire about it in person, or if you feel that this is just a normal ‘signature’, you can ignore it and concentrate on the content of the email.

... means that the sender sees the recipient as a peer, and not as some authority figure. Formally structured emails normally do not begin with a ‘Hey’.

Don’t forget to greet though, as an email without a greeting can come off as rude or even creepy.

The use of emojis is a way to communicate our intentions and not just a ‘fun’ thing that young people do. In fact, due to their universal nature, emojis transcend language barriers, and normally cannot be interpreted in the wrong sense.

While negotiating, it’s best to not use Emojis though, as it can come off as ‘trying to please’ the recipient.

Asking for favors requires some give and take. Sending a cold email instructing about some work that the recipient has to do, can come off as annoying and intrusive.

It is better to prepare the conditions and circumstances prior to sending the request (Pre-suasion), like a warm greeting, for instance. Even in the email body, a warm tone and a link to some article of interest can set the tone towards the recipient to say ‘Yes’ to your eventual delegation of work.

Each of us has their own communication style and also tend to take things personally.

While there are some apps that help with the tone of an email, and also remind us that the other person is human by displaying their LinkedIn picture, we have to understand that software can only help us in a limited way. Most people have good intentions and it is very rare that some are actively trying to offend or criticize you in a written format.

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