The Psychological Toll of Rude E-mails - Deepstash
The Psychological Toll of Rude E-mails

The Psychological Toll of Rude E-mails

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The Psychological Toll of Rude E-mails

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E-mail rudeness is a pervasive problem

Studies show that more than ninety percent of professionals surveyed admitted that they had experienced disrespectful e-mails at work.

Rude e-mails are on the rise. The e-mail may be written entirely in capital letters or contain exclamation marks equivalent to shouting across the office.

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Electronic communication is efficient, but it's detached. Sitting at a computer screen, the need for tact and a respectful tone disappears.

  • Being on the receiving end of such impoliteness can create lingering stress and negative emotions. The recipient may find it harder to stay engaged at work. The stress associated with e-mail rudeness can spill over into family life and, like a chain reaction, can send stress signals to other people.
  • A subtler form of aggression is failing to reply to a request, in effect giving others the "silent treatment." Not responding to an email leaves people hanging and struggling with uncertainty.

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With remote work on the rise, the use of electronic communication has allowed incivility to thrive.

  • To mitigate the stress, managers need to set clear and reasonable e-mail expectations. Organizations should create meaningful opportunities for employees to build good working relationships.
  • For employees, the best option to cope is to unplug from work after-hours.
  • Regardless of your level of stress, remember the rules of netiquette. Spend time composing your e-mail and notice inconsiderate expressions. Acknowledge a request and let your co-workers know when you will get back to them. Perhaps keep caps lock off.

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