I am attempting not to offend or miscommunicate by learning to choose my words a bit more carefully.
In a recent e-mail I used entire, when I should have used partial. This lead to a misunderstanding for everyone who read the e-mail. After a five-minute follow-up phone call, everything was clear. While I needed to send the e-mail for documentation purposes, I would have just rather addressed the issue over the phone in the first place. As many smart people point out on a regular basis, phone call lead to so much less confusion and there’s little room for misinterpretation, unlike e-mail.
How many e-mails a day do I write without really thinking about each word? Too many to count. As a writer, I would love to write something and then be able to sit on it for an hour, or better yet a day, before publishing or hitting send. E-mail doesn’t afford that luxury.
For the time being, I intend to slowly reread every e-mail before I send it. I hope this added time will be worth it and I will miscommunicate a little less.