Email Etiquette Rules to Follow

Most working professionals are subject to receiving a very high number of emails per day, with that being so, it can be frustrating to receive emails without a clear message or meaning, that we don't really need to receive, or that are seemingly written in the same context as a text message. 

We found a great article to discuss email etiquette rules that all working professionals should know; these are the highlights. 

  1. First and foremost, include a clear and direct subject line. The subject line will tell your recipient what to expect and will also make it easier to search inboxes at a later date if they need to reference your email.
  2. Use a professional email address. If you are a new business owner looking to connect with fellow entrepreneurs, it's important that you represent yourself in a respectful and meaningful way. Try to include your first name and your company name in your email address so you are easily identifiable. 
  3. Don't include people who do not need to be included. Inboxes are very easily cluttered, so only send your email communications to those who are directly affected by your message. 
  4. ALWAYS include a signature. Your signature should include your full name, your direct phone number, your company address, and any other relevant information. It is important to include this in every email so your recipient can easily locate your contact information at any given time. 
  5. Use professional language. Avoid saying things like "hey, guys!" unless you are very comfortable with the people you are emailing and that type of language has been previously established. 
  6. Be cautious with humor and/or sarcasm. The intonation of your voice cannot be heard in an email and therefore can be very easily misinterpreted. Be careful not to offend anyone with humor or sarcasm. 
  7. Reply to your emails even if the email wasn't intended for you. It's important to let people know you received their message and you are taking the necessary actions to move forward. It is also important to respond to emails that might not have been intended for you -- chances are, the person who sent the email does not know they sent the message to the wrong recipient. 
  8. Keep your font simple and easy to read, don't get carried away with comic sans. 
  9. Double check your recipients to ensure you're sending the message to the right person/people. 

Looking for more tips? Check out the full article here.

How to Deal with the Legalization of Cannabis in the Workplace.

If you're like many other Canadian employers looking for ways to ensure workplace safety with the legalization of cannabis, this blog is for you. 

The Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety released a document last June that provides suggestions and guidelines for businesses to follow once legalization occurs. We curated some of the most valuable aspects of the document and will highlight them for you in this post. 

  1. Canadian employers have a duty to provide a safe work environment and take all reasonable precautions to protect the health and safety of employees and others in the workplace. Due diligence is demonstrated by the employer’s actions before an event occurs, not after.
  2. To establish due diligence, an employer will have written occupational health and safety policies in place to establish any hazards around the workplace. The employer must then inform all employees about potential hazards and take the necessary actions to correct them.
  3. In the case of cannabis use and the workplace, the employer should consider workplace policies and programs as they may relate to impairment from any source such as fatigue, life stresses, alcohol, medications (used legally or illegally), cannabis (recreational or therapeutic), or any other substance.

It is important to tailor the policy to meet the specific needs of the workplace. Elements of the policy could include:

  1. that arrangements have been made for employee education (e.g., a general awareness regarding disability due to substance dependence)
  2. statement regarding if either medical/therapeutic or non-medical substances are allowed on the premises, or under what situations they would be allowed
  3. a mechanism for employees’ to confidentially report when they have been prescribed a medication that may cause impairment
  4. statement of the employee’s rights to confidentiality
  5. statement of who is covered by the policy and/or program
  6. definition of what the employer considers to be impairment
  7. definition of substance use
  8. statement of the purpose and objectives of the program
  9. that arrangements have been made for educating and training employees, supervisors, and others in identifying impaired behaviour and what steps will be taken
  10. provisions for assisting those with disability due to substance dependence
  11. processes for accommodation, and return to work/remain at work planning
  12. if applicable, statement of under what circumstances substance testing will be conducted, as well as the criteria for testing and interpretation of test results
  13. provision for a hierarchy of disciplinary actions

Having policies in place to prepare your company for the legalization of cannabis is important. We will be posting more from the document in our next post, but we hope you find this helpful in regards to policies and procedures. 

To read more, click here.

How Do You Increase Workplace Productivity?

We recently read an article that suggested each person has a different time of day in which they are the most productive; some people love to wake up for an early morning workout, while others to prefer to wake up and enjoy a cup of coffee before beginning their days. Either way, it’s important to allow your employees to work in a way that will benefit them, therefore increasing productivity and personal investment in the work place.

 

With a rise in millennials joining the work force, a higher importance is being placed on flexibility within the work place. Employees value the ability to leave early for a personal circumstance, if need be. This applies to working parents who wish to attend their children’s extra-curricular activities, as well as single people who have personal commitments outside of work. This isn’t to say that you should allow your employees to leave early every day, but allowing them the freedom to enjoy their personal life shows that you, as a business owner, place importance on your employees’ happiness.

 

Another interesting idea the article mentions is allowing your employees time to develop creative ideas away from their desk. Sitting at a desk and answering emails for eight hours a day can become robotic; as an employer, you should try to encourage your employees to take a walk at lunch, or to simply get up and stroll around the office every now and then. This will encourage creative thinking and new ideas as your employees experience a change of scenery and give their brains a small break.

 

In our office, we make a point of visiting new restaurants for team lunches, or we eat lunch outside on sunny days. As the insurance industry can become repetitive, we take the time to walk around the office, give our minds a break, and visit our co-workers to share ideas or work through problems together. It is very important to us to maintain a positive work environment with happy employees who feel supported, taken care of, and pleased to come to work each day.

What do you do in your office to increase productivity?


To read the article referenced, click here 

Pizza Party!

One of the most important things in our office is our company culture. We like to spend time building relationships and creating memories, this usually means going out for lunch on Fridays so we get the chance to catch up and unwind. Last Friday we had a pizza party on Shaylene's sky lounge - an outside patio and inside lounge on the top of her apartment building. 

Even though life gets busy, we always take the time to enjoy each other's company.

Pizza Party