Avoid These 6 Words in Your Work Emails

Bad Netiquette? Avoid these 6 words in your emails

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We’re at the height of the emoji and punctuation-centered communication era.  It is a time where an ‘okay’ means one thing in an email but type ‘okayy’ or the loaded ‘k’ instead, and it can be perceived as something else (read: rude/arrogant also, are you seriously sassing me?).


While the use of both is acceptable in casual online conversations – they don’t really have a place in your professional email correspondence. Or do they?


We have also read that the rules for digital communication cannot be categorized as ‘one byte fits all’.  Sometimes, a well placed exclamation point or ‘smiley face’ emoticon can humanize your emails.


Whichever side of the coin you favour, pay special attention to the following words.

Tip: context is key



Example: Could I please get presentation deck from last week’s meeting? I want to double check some information before I send the client an email update. 

Alternatives: you, us, our team, our department, our company

Revised Example: Could you please send over the presentation deck from our last meeting with the client? There are some figures I want to go over to make sure our team makes a good impression.



No alternatives needed. You can just leave this out (obviously).



Example: Sorry about that, I must have missed the reminder on my calendar.

Alternatives: you’re right, I apologise, I understand why you’re upset, going forward I will

Revised Example: I apologise for missing the reminder. Going forward I will be sure to double check my calendar first thing each morning.



Example: Actually, it was mentioned in the memo last week.

Alternatives: definitely, got it, I see, great point, I understand, that makes sense, understandable

Revised Example: Definitely. That’s a valid point.



Example: Apparently, using this word in an email makes me sound like I’m insulting the other person.

Alternatives: possibly, at a glance, it appears that, most likely

Revised Example: At a glance, that makes perfect sense.



Example: Yup, that’s fine.

Alternatives: great work, solid effort, excellent, smart move

Revised: I received your email and attachment. Great work on the presentation. Please go ahead and send it.


“Exclamation marks may sound rude if it’s used excessively. But it would really depend on the whole tone of the email.” — Marie, Publishing Manager

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