You know that satisfying feeling when you’ve crafted the perfect email? It says all you want it to say and so eloquently. You send it to your attorney. You wait for a response. You wait some more for a response.
Then you break down and ask your attorney about the email, and they haven’t even read it. “Oh,” they say, “why don’t you just tell me what it says,” they say.
I feel your pain. The desire to sputter and protest. All that time! All those beautiful words! Wasted on a troglodyte who apparently doesn’t read.
Alas! Attorneys are never going to read the long, eloquent, beautifully-crafted email. When it comes to the people who have all the attention span of a five year old on a sugar high, short emails rule.
Here are a few tips to increase the chances that your boss will pay attention to, and maybe even read, your email:
Tip #1: Put the most important information at the very top.
Attorneys are not going to wade through groundwork information to get to the nut. Even if the groundwork is essential for understanding the issue. However, if they read the important information, they may go on to read the rest of the email. Maybe. If it’s not too long and is in easily digestible chunks.
Tip #2: Short sentences. The fewer the words, the better.
Tip #3: Short paragraphs. The more white space, the better.
No matter how much I love the beautiful words and even more the beautiful sentences, one essential key to effective communication is to know your audience. When your audience is an attorney?
Hone your verbal communication skills.