Composing a professional email may be hard sometimes. But composing a tough email can be harder. Yet you might find yourself in the awkward position where you need to send a firm email to an employee or colleague.
The trick is to strike the right balance of tone to come across as both firm and fair. And to help businesses with that, small business association National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) has shared some useful tips.
Tips for Writing a Fair But Firm Email
Start with Something Friendly
Jumping straight into the problem makes the communication uncomfortable for the person receiving it. It also creates an impression that you’re not willing to address the issue. That’s why it’s a good idea to start your email with a friendly greeting to show you care.
Thank Them for Their Work
Continuing with the friendly tone you’ve established in your communication, show that you appreciate the work being done. It makes the recipients feel valued and encourages them to work harder.
Find Something Positive
Think of something truly positive the person receiving your mail has done at work. This will help you create the groundwork for some constructive criticism.
Don’t Throw Out Broad Criticism
The purpose of your criticism should be to find a solution to the problem and motivate the recipient. It is therefore essential for you to think of some specific areas of improvement relevant to the recipient.
Make Yourself Available
You don’t want the recipient to think that you’re simply placing the blame and washing your hands of the situation. That’s why you should end your email with an open invitation to engage in a dialogue. Let the recipients know they can reach you with their questions and you are available for a discussion.
For more tips, check out the infographic below: