March 19, 2019

Around the edges


In a hurry, we knock off an email. In there, no doubt, is the essential information. Maybe it’s a request for information (please) or a response for some (pretty please). Maybe it’s an action called for or a summary of work being done. Just the facts.

Around the edges, it’s a bit more blurry.

When asking, what context would help them answer not just the explicit question but the implied one too, what would help them help you more?

When responding, what else do they need to know to understand your answer, what other non-essential facts will get them further down the road than they asked?

When calling for action, what factors can you add better to explain the brief?

When updating, what would help them see the related consequences and dependencies, the why and not just the what?

Skippy strategy: Answering email isn’t merely transactional. It’s the work.