Rawpixel.com/ShutterstockThanks to technology—with apps, search engines, an intelligent personal assistant, and knowledge navigators at our fingertips—we live in an information-heavy world where people hope and expect to get answers ASAP. We especially depend on email as a speedy way to communicate with one another. That can be both a blessing and a curse, as messages have a tendency to pile up faster than we can respond to them.
But respond we must, according to LinkedIn Influencer Glenn Leibowitz, a LinkedIn Top Voice in Marketing and Social Media. According to his experience as McKinsey Head of Communications in Greater China, your speed of response to an email indicates how much you value your relationship with the sender. Cultivating trust with the people in your life may not seem so closely tied to email, but when too much time passes, people begin to feel ignored and strongly suspect that they are not worth your time or that you don’t care what they have to say.
You may not always be able to reply immediately, and that’s okay, but setting a personal standard for a response time and sticking to it, can ensure that the people you reach out to feel respected time and time again.
Whether it be by close of business, within 24 hours, or within the week, trying to shoot back a response before the email gets buried underneath a dozen more will keep both you, and the sender, at ease. There will definitely be times where a priority project or traveling gets in the way, in which case an “out of office” automated response is beneficial, but given your regular schedule, no matter how busy you are, a quick response is the best way to go.
Whether you just want to confirm that you received their email, or you want to keep your response short and sweet, these are all great replies that will take little time away from your priorities:
“Got your note. Back to you shortly.”
“Definitely want to get together. More soon.”
“Let me check my calendar and get back to you shortly!”
“Got it! Let me get back to you when I’ve had a chance to review the idea more carefully.”
“This sounds great. Wish I could make it. Hopefully next time!”
Use these quick replies to move through your in-box faster, even as you make notes to follow up on certain items. And if you’re really eager to have one of your emails read, here’s the best time to send important messages.