Our professional interactions have found themselves increasingly more online. With in person interactions, we learn how to dress well, give a firm handshake, and maintain good eye contact. This is very much a different story online, and with the influences of text speech and social media, the lines might be blurred when it comes to maintaining professionalism online. Our tips will help to turn you into a model professional while online!
Think about Tone
Unlike in person, tone can be tricky to decipher when the words you say are written in an email or posted online. We recommend keeping your tone neutral. You may have a witty or sarcastic remark that would entertain a colleague, but online this could be misinterpreted and cause you unnecessary issues. Keep your writing matter of fact and be mindful of the repercussions that could follow anything you post online.
Grammar is Great
It may seem easier to fall into the trap of using text speech and online shorthand when you post something on the internet, but it’s best to avoid this. Let your professionalism shine through by making sure you use correct spelling, punctuation, and grammar for any content online that is linked to your professionalism. Save the LOLs and OMGs for your friends and family and adopt the habit of writing in full sentences for your LinkedIn profile or emails.
Remember the Person
Always remember that there’s a person on the other side of that screen you’re typing on. Consider the language you use, and the tone you write in. Think about the intentions of your message and what it would be like if you were to receive what you send out. Using a computer or typing on a phone can remove the human aspect of socialising and may make us feel more confident to share what we’re really thinking, so it’s important to think about if what you’re saying is helpful and true.
Know When to Call
It’s handy to just fire away an email and await a response or chat in real time over instant messenger, but what should you do when the conversation is going on for too long without a resolution in sight? It’s as simple as picking up the phone and going over things more efficiently. Online correspondence is intended for convenience, but nothing compares to the traditional in person business interaction.
To recap, it’s important to remember that how we speak and behave in person may not translate the same way online. Be mindful of the things you say, make sure to write properly and know when to pick up the phone.