According to the Pew Research Center, 61% of Americans think that email is important to doing their jobs. Despite this fact, many of us are not good at it. Mastering the art of getting to the point is crucial especially if you consider that 66% of emails were opened on a smartphone or tablet. With this in mind, keep these useless phrases off your emails.
Please be advised
Many people use this because it sounds professional but it is also unnecessary. Be concise. The recipient already knows it’s important.
Please do not hesitate to contact me
This is one of many useless phrases that communicates the obvious. Email is a form of communication and it is expected that you will reply if it is important.
Senders usually include an ‘I think” to soften a blow. However, this phrase tells the recipient that you’re not sure of yourself. Whenever you’re communicating in emails or real life, you need to be confident. You also risk that the recipient disregarding your opinion of you use this phrase.
Enclosed/Attached please find
Nothing can actually be enclosed or attached in an email. This phrase is used when the sender wants to avoid using “I”. It seems minor, but it’s better to use “I attached…” to make your email more direct.
I hope you are well
This phrase is usually used on 3 occasions: when you want to hit the recipient with something unpleasant and when you want to feign closeness. If you are genuinely concerned about the person, ask them directly and avoid using this filler line.
To Whom It May Concern
There are only a few situations when this phrase is appropriate. If you know the recipient, address them directly. If you don’t, avoid using this unnecessarily formal phrase. The phrase also makes you sound unconfident.
In the days of snail mail, this phrase was the norm. However, in the digital age, it seems stiff and very formal. Instead of using this phrase, use “Cheers” or “Thank you” or just sign you name.
Sorry to bother you
Opening an email with an apology undermines our credibility. Instead of apologizing, get straight to the point. Tell them why you’re contacting them instead of hiding behind apologies.
To be honest with you
This is tricky. It is commonly used when you want to soften a blow or when you want to be candid about something. However, it also tells the recipient that you might not be honest before.
“You should” implies that you make their decisions for them. Avoid using this phrase unless they’re asking you for advice.
When people use “no problem”, there is actually a problem and you’re softening them up. Instead of useless phrases like “no problem”, use “you’re welcome” or “sure thing” to avoid miscommunication.
We all live in a world ruled by calendars and deadlines and “I’ll try” sounds wishy washy. This phrase does not instill confidence in your abilities. It can also make you seem disengaged or not fully committed to your project.
As I mentioned before
It seems like your explaining the same thing over and over again. Instead of making it seem like your repeating yourself, try to be considerate. Get to the point even if it seems like you’re repeating yourself.
Let me know if there’s anything else I can do for you
This phrase is totally unnecessary because it opens a whole can of things totally unrelated to your purpose. Instead of beating around the bush, let the recipient know what it is you can do for them.
I completely understand how you feel
Before you type this phrase to your email, stop and think if you’ve been in their shoes before. These types of useless phrases can sound thoughtful and well-intentioned but it can also come off as condescending and distanced. Emails are the currency in the business world. While proper courtesy is important, rambling and improper phrases can hurt your credibility. Eliminating these phrases from your email ensures that your email is well-received.