I am privileged to work with several teams of people all around the world. To stay in contact, share ideas, and make it easy to communicate we use email rings (or mailing list). An email ring is an email address that has multiple members on it. When you send to that specific email address, everyone gets the email. Then when someone replies it goes out to everyone on the list too. Email rings can be great for collaboration. But they can also be bad, because it makes it easier to fight and have a bad attitude. Since I know that I am NOT always “swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath” sometimes over email, I came up with the following list of things to remind myself when repling to or writing an email to a list like this (or any email for that matter…this can even be extended to all Social Media).
16 Things to Remember on an Email Ring:
- Do I really need to reply to this email? Is it necessary?
- Am I just arguing? Or disagreeing without a cause?
- Are they really asking for my advice? Or someone more experienced?
- Am I an authority on the subject?
- Should I just be a learner in this topic instead of giving my opinion?
- Am I replying back with a good attitude or out of spite and anger?
- Is my reply in any way rude, crude, or unkind?
- Will this reply publicly embarrass the other person?
- Should I just write this person an individual email?
- Is my reply positive, thoughtful, and kind?
- Will others think more or less of me based on my response to this email?
- Am I being helpful, hurtful, or just plain useless?
- If disagreeing, am I doing it with tact?
- Am I saying something that I wouldn’t say in person?
- Since there is no emotion and body language in email, can someone take the way I am saying this wrong? Should I just call or talk to them in person?
- Am I bucking against another leader, not allowing them to lead, or trying to tell them what to do?
Bonus: Is my response filled with Christian grace? Am I representing myself well as a follower of Jesus? Will this help or hurt my testimony as a believer? If truth needs to be spoken, am I doing it in love?
Maybe you have more “things to remember” to add to this list?