Friday, October 31, 2014

Tips for writing a professional email


No one ever really sits down and teaches you how to write a professional email. It’s kind of something you’re left to figure out on your own. I write emails all.the.time. Whether it’s to a reader, a professor, my school advisor, or a causal email to a friend, I like to think I’ve gotten the hang of emails. It’s important to understand email etiquette so if you’re ever in the situation where your emailing someone about a potential job, or an internship, you really want to impress them!

Here are some of my tips and tricks to writing a professional email.



1.     FONT- First and foremost make sure you use a normal, readable font. The most annoying thing ever is when you get an email and it’s in a weird curly font that I need help deciphering what it says. I suggest sticking to Times New Roman, Arial, or Cambria.

2.     EMAIL ADDRESS- The first thing someone is going to see when your email pops up is who it’s from. The last thing you want them to see is your embarrassing email address from 8th grade. We all have them, mine was just as embarrassing as everyone else’s, but I have since then made a new email address with my name that I use for all my professional emails. I suggest creating an email address that has your first and last name in it so people can easily recognize who the email is from right when it pops up in their inbox.

3.     SUBJECT- The second thing someone is going to see when your email pops up is the subject. Make your subject concise, and to the point. This will help the recipient easily identify what it’s about and serve as a refresher when they are answering emails. If you are emailing about a possible internship, put in the subject box: “Internship Inquiry”.

4.     SPELL CHECK- Grammar is essential. The best tip I can give to avoid spelling mistakes and little grammar issues in important emails is to write your email in Word first. I will be the first to admit I am the worst speller. It took me until 9th grade to learn the different between essay and easy. Word helps me catch the little mistakes and then your can easily copy and paste it over into the email. After you have written it,  read over it multiple times to make sure everything makes sense. The best way to ensure it makes sense is to read it out loud. You would be surprised how many mistakes you find when you read something you wrote out loud!

5.     CONCISE- Keep in mind that short, sweet, and to the point is the best way to write a email. It’s okay to fluff it up a little but I highly suggest not writing a page long email for one little question. A short opening explaining who you are/ asking your questions will do and then following with a nice closing thanking them for their time is perfect! Most professionals are on tight time schedules and the worst thing is when you receive a super long email for one little question!

6.     THIS ISN’T TEXTING- This isn’t texting. Although you can send emails from your phone you have to keep in mind that email is a more formal, professional way of communicating than texting. Don’t use acronyms like LOL, JK, and NBD. Although they might be okay in a tweet or text they are not appropriate for an email. The same goes for punctuation. Although you might not use periods or commas in a text, you definitely need proper punctuation in an email. I have a tendency to  use ALL CAPS a lot in texts, but definitely avoid doing that in an email.

7.     TIMELY- Imagine if you were on the other end. You would want them to reply to you as soon as possible so try to reciprocate that by replying to any emails you get in a very timely fashion. If it is extremely time sensitive try to reply within a day and all other emails I would suggest 3 days maximum.

8.     BE POSITIVE- I cannot stand negative nelly’s. It’s no fun to receive a depressing email from someone who doesn’t believe in themself! If you are emailing  a professional, it’s highly important to sound positive and confident. People like to surround themselves with positive people and they can tell through your email that you are a happy positive person, they’re more likely to want to hire you!

9.     WAIT- One small trick I learned when I was younger from my dad was to wait to fill in the “To” email address until you are completely done with the email. This prevents you accidently pressing the send button before you are done and it being sent unfinished!

10. CONTACT INFORMATION- Make sure to include contact information in your signature. I usually have my email under my name as well as my cell phone number in case they would prefer to call me!

Remember,

xoxo

Shannon


Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Everyday Jewels

My dad always makes the joke that I lean to my left side because the stack on my wrist is so heavy.  It’s totally not true, but I wouldn't doubt if it did start to happen because I rarely leave the dorm without a few pieces of jewelry on.


These are the pieces that I feel practically naked without. I have worn a watch for as long as I can remember. When I was younger it always took me weeks of searching for a new watch because I would become so attached to mine. They would always be digital and the rubber would typically fade in the sun every year. I always sport a fabulous watch tan in the summer too.



On the first day of my senior year, my mom got me this Kate Spade watch, and I swear I haven’t taken it off since. On typical class days, I pair my watch with my moon and lola preston bracelet and a simple pearl bracelet. I change up what kind of pearl bracelet, but I think it helps break up the gold and who doesn't love pearls?! Depending on the outfit, I almost always wear my monogram necklace and I refuse to leave the dorm room without pearl studs. This pair of Kate Spade pearls studs I ordered for my formal this past spring, but I have started to wear them on a daily basis because I love them so much!

When I feel ready to switch it up a little sometimes I'll add some fun bangles for a more colorful stack!

Remember,

xoxo

Shan

Monday, October 27, 2014

Whirlwind

Whirlwind.

If there was one word to describe this week, it would be whirlwind.

I have had tours upon tours, a French test, econ readings, homecoming events, graphic design projects, meetings, study abroad research, and videos to make. This past week has been super crazy but fun and exciting all at the same time!

Let’s start with two Fridays ago (the 17th). After class on Friday (I get out at 11:30!!!), my friend Kayla and I went straight to the movies to see The Best Of Me, the new Nicholas Sparks movie! I am usually a sucker for a good Rom Com but this was definitely not my favorite Nicholas Sparks (but let’s be honest could anything beat The Notebook?!).  It was still a nice break from homework and a fun way to kick off the weekend! We ran back to campus so we could get ready to drive to Charlotte with 5 friends to go to Scarowinds! Scarowinds is at an amusement park (like Six Flags or Bush Gardens), but during the Halloween season they open it at night and it’s turned into a haunted amusement park! All the big roller coasters were still running, which are my absolute favorite and honestly it was no where near as scary as I thought it might be. I cannot even watch a scary movie and I was completely fine. We had an absolute blast riding all the rides until midnight but we didn't get back to Campus until almost 2!


Saturday was rough because I was getting up super early (I had to be ready to go at 7am!!) because we were going on a hike to celebrate a friend in my pledge class’s 20th birthday! So I didn’t get much sleep…..We had an absolute blast though, and the fall colors were gorgeous. Definitely something we are going to make a yearly tradition.




Sunday was homework day. We had a four hour sorority meeting planned from 2-6 and then chapter at 7:30. I woke up early (again!) to try to finish homework and unfortunately my computer decided to crash/ freeze right in the middle of a project. Of course it didn't recover and I called my mom sobbing and frustrated. I ended up redoing it all and somehow I lived to talk about it. Let’s say I was happy when Sunday ended.


This past week was homecoming week! I was nonstop busy with activities which made the week 10X more fun. We built floats, presented skits, and Friday we had a huge pep rally/ carnival/ swing dancing event! It was a blast but none the less, exhausting.Saturday was our homecoming game and we tailgated all morning and then headed to the game in the afternoon!







Yesterday was another birthday celebration for a sorority sister and this time we celebrated by going to Asheville for lunch and we walked around downtown. It was nice to get off campus for a few hours and spend time outside (and not doing homework!). 



Now that I feel like I have finally caught you all up on what I have been doing the past two weeks, here’s a few things that you should know!

Be in the know:

Elections are coming up and TheSkimm has made a super great midterm election guide that you need to check out!

Shop Bando, one of my favorite companies is looking for interns! Be sure to check it out if you live in the LA area!







Remember,

xoxo

Shannon







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