5 Ways to Respond to Negative Emails
We always can’t avoid negative emails, especially in our online industry. However, there are several ways to deal with them and make it less stressful every time we get one.
- Remember Abe Lincoln
- Abe Lincoln had this habit of writing negative letters and insults to his rivals. However, after an unfortunate incident involving one of his letters resulted in a duel, he began to change course.
- What he learned was words will always impact the receiver in ways the sender won’t understand.
- Since he couldn’t vent out his frustrations about his rivals in public, he would write a letter with all his grievances and comments on paper and then keep it in a drawer. The next morning, once he’s in a clearer state of mind- he then writes a congenial letter.
- Lesson is- it’s okay to vent your frustrations on a negative email or even write a reply when you’re feeling angry or frustrated. The key is not to send it and keep it . Once all the emotions and anger have been vented out, then you’re able to write and edit a more manageable reply.
- Understand Virtual Humor
- Because of the lack of body language or face to face conversation, jokes, messages and emails can be read differently and often misinterpreted.
- In the online world, it’s much better to be friendly and professional
- Certain jokes and phrases may sound funny to you but it can mean something totally different to a reader
- Online People Are Still People
- Since there aren’t really faces to those emails or messages, it’s hard to remember that those senders are people too.
- Without the face to face interaction, we don’t worry about offending others- as we don’t see their reactions. Because of this, we often think whatever we say online has little to no consequences
- The next time you get a negative or rude email, try to put yourself in the shoes of the sender. Ask why they could be sending it, an unhappy customer perhaps? Maybe just their writing style? Stressed?
- Even if the sender is wrong- it helps when you assess what could be causing the problem and ultimately helps you type out a fair reply
- Emojis and Emoticons Help
- While not entirely the most professional and formal, Emoticons or Emoji’s help convey a tone to the email. However, these are only proper when the emails are much more casual.
- Use smilies and winks to convey something positive and let your reader be aware of the tone you want to set your email in.
- Know When to Discuss Online and Offline
- There are some exchanges that need to be done online and some that just need to be resolved offline
- Know when heated debates and email exchanges should end and when a phone call or a face-to-face meeting should start
- A phone call to solve the issue and clarify matters is much faster rather than hashing it out via email exchange
These notes were taken from 5 Ways To Respond To Negative, Evil Emails by Travis Bradberry.