5 things you shouldn’t say in a business email

Next time you want to talk about a raise, berate a co-worker, or ‘reply all,’ refer to these reminders. It might save your job.

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In the workplace, as in life, some things are better left unsent—as email or text—and instead require a face-to-face conversation. Based on a few such horror stories I’ve recently heard, here are some communication dos and don’ts to tuck away for future reference.

DO NOT email your boss asking for a raise or a promotion. Experts agree that you must set up an appointment to talk to your boss to show how serious you are about asking for a raise. Treat this as a business meeting. Don’t discuss your raise by email, at the water cooler, or by telephone (unless you and your boss don’t work at the same location).

DO NOT email a subordinate to voice displeasure with performance. Without context, eye contact, voice inflection etc., you may be setting up a misunderstanding, en email war, or unnecessary stress. And if stress is your intention, you could even be accused of workplace intimidation.

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