Emails and Memos

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CC2048 English for Workplace Communication (Sciences and Technology) Lecture 5: Emails and Memos

Types of memos and e-mail messages
1. 2. 3. 4.

those that inform those that request those that respond those that persuade (chapter 6)

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E-mails and Memos that Inform
Use to explain organization policies, procedures, and guidelines. Be particularly clear and concise. First paragraph: states the main point directly. Body: explains the reasons. Closing paragraph: restates primary purpose.

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Memos and e-mail messages that inform
Ineffective Informational Memo

DATE: TO: FROM: SUBJECT:

May 1, 2010 Department Managers Waldo Hightower HIRING

As summer approaches, we have been thinking about hiring new employees. This is to inform you that we have scheduled three employment interviewing sessions. Your presence is required at these sessions to help us avoid making poor selections. Please mark your calendar for the three times. The first meeting is May 3 in the conference room. The second meeting is May 9 in Office 22 (the conference room was scheduled). On May 15 we can finish up in the conference room. In view of the fact that your projects need talented new team members, I should not have to urge you to attend and be well prepared. Please examine all the candidates' résumés and send me your ranking lists.

Checklist for e-mail/memo writing
Subject line Is it informative (e.g. summarizes the central idea of the message; includes verb form)? Is it concise (e.g. uses abbreviated style/incomplete sentence)? Opening: Does the opening sentence state clearly the writer’s intension? Body Does it explain the main idea introduced in the opening sentence? Does it provide relevant details? Does it use any listing technique for easy comprehension? Closing: Does it include any action information/end date? Language Does it emphasize reader benefits? Does it sound positive? Does it sound conversational and professional? Is it free of wordy and outdated expressions?

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Discussion
Diagnose problems in the memo and suggest relevant solutions. .

Group 1: subject line and opening Group 2: body and closing Group 3 & 4: language

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E-mails and Memos that Request
Use the direct approach unless you expect the reader to resist. Be courteous and respectful. Write clearly to avoid misunderstanding. Provide a specific end-date so reader can plan a response. Consider getting a co-worker to read it for clarity before sending it out. (See Figure 4.5, p.101) 7

Email That Requests Greetings:
.

Please answer the questions below about the possibility of starting a casual dress day program at PowerData. .

Optional salutation; some prefer to use receiver’s name in the first sentence Prepares reader by immediately describing request Explains reasoning behind request and provides details

Many employees and some managers have inquired about the possibility of dressing casually occasionally. In my own opinion, causal attire may make people feel more at ease in the office. On the other hand, casual dress may encourage sloppy work. Your answers to the following questions will help determine a course of action.

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Would you like to see one day a week set aside as a “casual dress” day? Why? If you answer yes, should we set up a written dress code to prohibit such attires such as shorts, tank tops, T-shirts with slogans, baseball caps, and athletic clothes? If we set aside a casual dress day, will the office atmosphere remain professional? .

Uses bullets to make questions easily readable

I’d appreciate your individual responses by May 5 so that we can discuss the matter at the next Management Team meeting set for May 8. .

shows appreciation for feedback, closes with end date and reason

Henri
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E-mails and Memos that Respond
Prepare by: collecting, organizing, outlining information First paragraph: begin with a clear statement of the main idea Body: provide the information requested (consider...
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