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Saturday, December 02, 2006

Posted by philgomes 8:33 PM
Signing Your Emails

Signing Your Emails

Oh, dear...

Ever read an article in a high-profile publication that implies you've been doing something totally wrong for, like, fifteen years?

NotMartha and Jason Kottke point to an article about how people read into email signoffs. You know... "Warmly, [name]" or "Yours Truly, [name]".

Well... In pretty much my whole professional life, I've signed my emails:

Best,

/pmg

According to The Old Gray Lady, though, I've been unwittingly involved in some minor "E-mail-y Post" netiquette faux-pas.
Mr. [Chad] Troutwine is not alone in thinking that an e-mail sender who writes "Best," then a name, is offering something close to a brush-off. He said he chooses his own business sign-offs in a descending order of cordiality, from "Warmest regards" to "All the best" to a curt "Sincerely."
Of course, some disagree:
"Best" does have its fans, especially in the workplace, where it can be an all-purpose step up in warmth from messages that end with no sign-off at all, just the sender coolly appending his or her name.

"I use 'Best' for all of my professional e-mails," said Kelly Brady, a perky publicist in New York. "It's friendly, quick and to the point."

I used to work with someone who would sign her emails all kinds of ways. When she signed her emails "Respectfully," though, she usually meant the opposite. "Respectfully" was almost a hex-like acronym for "Really, Expect Severe Pelvic Effluvia Coming To Fruition Until Loss of Life, Yutz."

Here's what I recommend... Find an email sign-off and stick with it. That way, people won't tie themselves into knots reading into what you really mean when you sign an email "Warmly" one day and "Cordially" the next.

So, it looks like I'm sticking with "Best."

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