If you are about to write about your grievances on e-mail – read on……
Psychology behind a Professional E-mail when you are angry
I intend to keep this blog very niche narrow. What I will talk about is, specifically – The way to compose a Professional email which cannot be ignored.
A mail which will yield results, from someone who is in a completely different field altogether (Like if you feel violated by the Bank for example).
I was once told by a very senior Master :
Boy, If you want to get the job done, do it yourself!!
The importance of physical presence still remains the most valuable thing in achieving anything.
No matter how many emails you send and even with the advent of Skype and Viber, people still fly halfway across the world to attend to Board meetings and seminars, because we all understand the importance of being there in person.
But then we cannot be everywhere right? There is a clearly defined technique which can be used for sending hard hitting professional emails which can get the job done.
The professional email: The Psychology behind it
A little discussion on the Psychology of the Professional email is required before we jump into the process.
If you are trying to convey an instruction to someone who is responsible to you, the job is merely child’s play. You can write in whichever way you want and people will still listen.
They will, because they have to.
Okay , disclaimer: Do not try that with East European juniors, or Africans or…. come to think of it most people. If you do not maintain your respect with a junior, and try sending harsh mails, its only a matter of time before he retaliates.
Well, it gets tricky when your mail is intended to change opinions of the recipient.
As we become adults we usually become opinionated. We stick to an opinion on basis of our own beliefs, standing by our sound judgement, which seems logical to us.
Even a Real Life Villain has a very well made justification of what he is doing and why he is doing it.
Understand this, Most of us live in our own bubble thinking we are the best judge.
When we say: “Come on!! You should admit it! It’s logical!”
it usually means : “You should agree with me because this seems logical to me.”
If you are hitting a belief with words, it often becomes a challenge.
Rules of composing a Professional mail: To change opinions
Remember these 4 things:
Your mail has to be
- hard hitting,
- convey the correct sentiment,
- yet look for improvement and
- not be personally targeting anyone
Do not compose a Professional email when you are angry
This had to be the first rule.
Example of an email composed when you are angry:
We have received a updated list of the comments.
I feel your comments on the issue are not relevant and it will be better if you read your mails before you send them.
This will make our jobs much easier”
Example of the same mail sent when you are peaceful in mind:
I would request you to kindly reconsider the following comments sent in the previous mail: ….. 1. 2…….
Thanks and best regards
An Angry email can start an endless and baseless string of correspondences which will be extremely unprofessional. It will not matter who is right or wrong , the impression of the people in ‘cc’ who don’t really care, will be tainted for both parties. So do not write or reply to a mail when you are frustrated or angry. It will be extremely counter productive.
2. Start with the subject which must be very clear but not personal
The subject must make the topic clear and distinct, such as:
XX Bank, Geneva: Grievance against Bank Management
as opposed to : Mail from Mr. XXXXX
Get the picture??
3. Introduce yourself
If you are known to the recipient, there is not need for this, but other wise Start by briefly introducing yourself.
This must be in one line and it should be the end of the paragraph. Its like picking up the phone first you introduce yourself before explaining the topic, right?
4. Start with a positive comment
This is something I have always believed in and it works.
When you have to say some thing which may not sound good, it will hit harder when you start positive. It means you are objective about the issue and do not blame everyone for it. Also, it makes the reader interested to read your mail, which may be quite long.
Don’t start saying:
“Your Bank has a severely mismanaged staff, not to speak of the broken toilet doors which are not repaired for ages, and the ill-mannered receptionist who never wishes………….” This seems childish and downright annoying.
“Please note that I have been banking with you for 4 years now, and I have full faith in the integrity and professionalism of your bank.”
5. Be precise and concise to the problem you have faced only.
IF you have been ill treated that mail should not be clubbed with another grievance which you have last year.
Please be entirely objective about the issue.
Say what has happened, if possible backed up by evidence. Do not speculate, don’t use words like “I thought”, or “I assumed”
Say exactly the incident, nothing more, nothing less.
6. Do not blame a person, blame the management style and suggest genuine improvement
This is again a very common mistake made. See the first example above.
The angry mail blames the person, while the second one is much more positive and gives genuine suggestions for improvement.
Instead of saying: “Your receptionist Mr. XXX ill-behaved with me and said- Bla bla bla”
That’s too much detail!!
It sound much more professional when you say
“I was ill treated at the reception and given wrong information”
The second approach means – the person himself is not really the one to blame, if he has the audacity to treat someone that way, then the whole management system is wrong. This is what a top management level employee (Whom you are writing to, hopefully) will relate to.
7. End positive
Again, ending a professional email in a positive note wraps up the whole thing and makes the recipient believe that you mean business, that you are not a child.
This line got me a big refund from one of the biggest banks in India:
“I trust in your Bank and would like to know what steps will be taken to address my grievance.
Please restore my faith in this institution.”
8. Dont show all your cards:
Take things slow.
Even if you know this matter can be taken higher, do not reveal that from the beginning.
Have faith that the management will do everything to resolve the issue and only if they do not, escalate the matter to higher authorities.
Being threatening in the mail is not protocol, and will put people in the defensive. You might end up answering for your behaviour too.
You will be surprised so many things can be done remotely through emails and electronic correspondences.
Follow the rules outlined above and see miracles happen.
If you wish to learn more about Emailing techniques and about how your can really save time in emailing, please download this Free Ebook: How to Send A Perfect Email in 2 Minutes.
It is available in the page: Free Ebook – Perfect mail
Please subscribe to my blog clicking the link on your right for more such updates in your inbox.