How do you sign off emails? Do you stick to the tried and tested letter formalities taught at school, or do you keep it more informal?
I've always kept my email sign offs pretty serious, more often than not ending with 'Kind Regards' or 'Many Thanks'. But that's not even close to how I talk and I'm pretty sure it's not how you talk either. So why do we do it?!
There something about work emailing which cajoles us into sounding like someone else. Isn't work serious enough without boring each other with overly serious language. Shouldn't we sound like real people with personalities, rather than an identikit employee bot who's stuck in '90's formal letter writing mode. In the right moment and with the right recipient yes formal sign offs do still have a place, but if your emailing someone you work with frequently surely there comes a point when you can relax the formalities and just sign off with your name, or 'thanks', 'cheers', 'brilliant thanks', etc.
Shaun Keavney made me laugh recently on his BBC 6music breakfast show, with an off the cuff remark to a listener: "mahoosive regards". Sums it up nicely how odd the practice is.
Think about how the language you use everyday reflects on your business brand, whether that's in emails, on the phone, on social media or wherever; is it inline with the brand voice you want people to hear, or is it far from the mark? Branding is about so much more than just a logo, colour palette and graphics; it reaches into every element and way in which you communicate your business.
Ditching the formalities doesn't make you unprofessional, it makes you look and sound authentic so that your written voice is on brand too.
So this is me changing my ways, see you later kind regards, I'm switching to a more British 'cheers'.
Photo: Rest By The Pier, Steve Webster.