Advent tip #17: “Reply All” is probably not what you want

It’s holiday season, so it’s likely you’ll be emailing groups of friends, friends of friends, and so on.

Whether it’s passing on Christmas greetings, or making plans to meet them at the beach after work for a barbecue (maybe not in the Northern Hemisphere, but you get the idea), or figuring out who’s going to take the least popular Christmas-to-New-Year support desk shifts…

…you may end up with emails that have plenty of recipients, possibly including people you don’t know very well, or who are your boss’s boss’s boss.

And if you have email access on your phone, you may very well find yourself replying when you’re already at the beach barbie, perhaps even when you’ve already been there a while.

That’s where today’s tip comes in.

“Reply All” is probably not what you want.

To make it perfectly clear why, here’s an example:

To: Roland
From: James
CC: Management Team, HR Department, Senior VP Team, Board
Subject: Company beach party this Friday

You are invited. Dress code casual.

Reply All would result in this:

To: James
From: Roland
CC: Management Team, HR Department, Senior VP Team, Board

Bring it on, Jimbo! Let's sink a few tinnies, then dump
the other losers and head to the Beach Bar.

“Reply All” is not what you wanted, if you see what we mean.

Also, while we’re about it, remember that when you are emailing many different recipients, especially people outside your organisation who don’t already know one another, you should be using BCC:, not CC:, and here’s why.

Take care, and if in doubt, don’t sent it out!

Images of Christmas tree and Advent calendar courtesy of Shutterstock.