Re: Re: Re: Re: Reply All Disrespect All

2 minute read


It is much cheaper to send email than to receive it.

With just a few keystrokes, and a quick Reply All, you have the opportunity to broadcast your email messages to everyone on the CC list. Then the lucky recipients can wade through the emails and hit the delete key, or file it in an email folder ‘just in case…’

According to a study by Loughborough University in the UK is takes an average of 76 seconds to read each of these messages. If someone gets just 50 of these a day, it’s taking over an hour every day to keep the email inbox clean. That is about 12.5% of an eight hour working day – and that’s before you factor in the cost of spam.

If you send an email to someone who doesn’t need to receive it, then you’re saying that you don’t care about wasting their time. It is disrespectful.

If you’re a manager and you’re automatically copying all of your team on all of your emails, then you should consider the fact that they will be less productive. I don’t think that’s what you want. And your emails are probably not that important.

You should generally only be sending an email if you responding to a request, asking for a response, or if you need someone to take an action. If through multiple ‘Reply Alls’ you have conditioned them to ignore or delete your emails, then you’re less likely to get a response, or even have them read your email.

Here are 5 questions you might ask yourself before you send an email.

  1. Does the recipient need to get the email at all?
  2. Is the Subject Line still relevant to the current topic or has the Re: Re: Re: spaghetti rendered the subject line irrelevant or misleading?
  3. Does the recipient need to get the email at all?
  4. Is the email easy to consume by the reader, or does she have to download an attachment or click on a link to get the intended message?
  5. Does the recipient need to get the email at all?

For many people time is their most precious commodity, and when you waste it you’re saying that you don’t value their time.

Before you hit Reply All, stop and think about whose time you are wasting.




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