Steps to Management Success – Step 134: Acknowledge All Correspondence

Written By Rick Frishman Published April 15th, 2010


Acknowledge All Correspondence

Whenever someone sends you mail or e-mail, other than mass mailings, promptly acknowledge it. At the least, thank them for the message. A quick acknowledgment is a courtesy that tells them that you read their message and want to remain in contact. It will buy you additional time to get back to them with any substantive information they may have requested.

WHAT IT MEANS: Businesses are based on building strong, productive relationships. Building these relationships is a cumulative process that takes time and effort. A key factor in forging good and lasting relationships is creating goodwill. Those who promptly respond and acknowledge contacts create goodwill because they don’t leave others hanging. People want to work and do business with individuals who are responsive and with whom they have built goodwill.

ACTION PLAN: Quickly reply to correspondence regardless of how small or insignificant it is. When it clearly calls for a response, get back to the sender as soon as you can. If you can’t provide what the sender requested, state that you will get the information to him or her shortly. When correspondence is sent to you only to keep in touch, still promptly respond. Often, these communiqués are thinly veiled feelers, and your reply—even if it’s just to decline for the moment—will keep the channels of communication open and help build goodwill.

EVEN BETTER: In addition to mail and e-mail, acknowledge phone calls. Usually, simply sending a brief e-mail is all you need. People will appreciate the courtesy, which will strengthen your relationship.

(Excerpted from: 10 Clowns Don’t Make a Circus. . . and 249 Other Critical Management Success Strategies by Steven Schragis and Rick Frishman)

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