The One Word Email

One of my favorite subjects in my People-Centric skills course is discussing email responses. Communication should be clear and complete but also concise. There is a fine balance between concision and completeness. The perfect example is a simple response to a request.

Anytime someone has sent a request or you want to add a simple answer to a question, the most common response is a one-word answer: Yes, No, OK, Thanks. I always implore attendees to change this vicious cycle – DON’T SEND A ONE WORD EMAIL! It comes off as short, contrite and possibly rude. I realize we are reading emotion into an email and you should never do that BUT that is what people do. So, we should not give them that opportunity and DON’T SEND A ONE WORD EMAIL. Try it and I promise you will see a great response and better and more timely responses. Instead of X, Try This:


– Yes: Yes, thank you OR Yes, thanks for checking.
– No: No, thank you though OR No but thanks for considering, etc.
– Thanks: Thank You.

The last one is the simplest. Is there a difference between Thanks and Thank You? Trust me, there is. Try it and you will see the difference.


Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *