“Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible.”

—Buddhist Quote

Never Write A Nasty Email

In business, we all deal with people who are difficult and challenge our patience. All of us have responded with offence, anger and frustration, but it is always a mistake to write an email which is vicious, mean, condescending, or cruel. Writing a sarcastic email may feel good in the moment, but it is a transitory pleasure that doesn’t last. And frankly, the type of person who caused you to write the email likely won’t be changed as a result, so there’s not much point if you’re hoping to modify their behaviour.

This temporary venting of a negative emotion will come back and haunt you months or years later, and could end up costing you and your business political, social, and financial resources. The person you blast today may be your boss down the road, or sitting on a funding board making decisions about your company. And if they aren’t, they may be friends of the people who are. People don’t remember professional emails that get things done. Those serve their purpose and are forgotten. What they will remember are emails and comments that offend them, and they are more likely to share them with others, so why ruin your reputation in a moment?

Don’t let other people’s issues reduce you. Grow and learn instead of falling into bad patterns or knee-jerk reactions. Step back or walk away. Take a deep breath and wait until you can think clearly. And if you need to write it out, do that somewhere private where you can shred or burn it afterwards.

Stop, breathe, think . . . before you press the ‘send’ key. Remember, it is easier to stay out of trouble then to get out of trouble.

Decisions made in fear or anger are rarely good decisions.