Effective Communication during Pandemic

With organizations in the Brocvkille area and across Canada adapting to a pandemic, effective communication has become more important than ever. You will need to make sure your organization is as informed as possible on the shifting landscape of this work environment.

When communicating a detailed and easy-to-reference series of messages throughout your organization, email is a prime candidate for delivery. And yet, despite our familiarity with email, the prospect of deliberately drafting such a message can be daunting.

As emails have made themselves a staple in workplace communication, the etiquette has become somewhat inconsistent. Often when sending off a quick answer, colleagues will set formalities aside and simply send off a message containing a sentence or two.

With all of this in mind, we have prepared a quick guide help you structure your emails before sending them out.

Keep it Subject-Focused

While the specific topics will fluctuate from email to email, remember to keep in mind that your readers are going to expect all of these emails to be relevant to your subject. For example, if you are sending out emails about a pandemic like COVID-19, be sure you aren’t adding routine announcements or unrelated news. You may find that some of your subjects are far-reaching within your company; just be sure to ask yourself whether or not your topic is affected by the overall subject of your emails.

Categorize your Information

Unlike one-off emails, emails that come out as a series will likely have recurring information and a need for a consistent layout of content.

Announcement – This is where you will communicate any changes to the recurring information (like contact numbers) or the organization/frequency of emails.

Main Topics– This section is the driving force of every new email. Here is where you will add all new information and updates. As you will likely be covering several topics per email, make sure that you separate every new topic under its own header.

Resources/Contact Information -- This is where you will provide the disclaimers, company commitments and contact information that is relevant to the email series. Keep this information in all your emails so that they may be easily referenced by your readers.

Arrange your Content

Once you have categorized your information, you can plan out how your email will look. Generally, you will want to arrange your content in the order shown above. You should open emails by briefly directing your readers to important changes in contact information and resources. After that, go into the topics of the email and close with the resources and contact info.

Establish Feedback Channels

Your emails should be a one-way line of communication. If readers begin hitting the reply buttons whenever they have questions, your inbox will be flooded with replies about a plethora of subjects. Before you begin sending out our emails, establish some of the following response channels:
• General questions
• Emergency questions
• Feedback and suggestions

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SAMPLE EMAIL

RE: : COVID-19 Update April 25/20

Good afternoon,

We’re grateful to have received so many suggestions on how to ease the our work from home process. To make things easier, we have created two addresses for general inquiries and suggestions. These addresses, along with all other contact information can be found at the bottom of each email. Please refer to the latest email for the most up-to-date contact information.

Work From Home Guidelines

Our IT Department has created a sheet of guidelines and best practices for working from home (attached). We ask that you download, review and follow these guidelines as you work remotely. If you have any questions relating to the attached, please forward them to our general inquiries inbox.

Work-Related Travel

In order to keep pace with social distancing requirements, we have suspended all non-essential travel until further notice. Please contact your supervisor with any concerns related to this suspension.

Contact & Resources

Please refer to Health Canada (https://www.canada.ca/en/health-canada.html) for a reliable source of information on COVID-19.

General Inquires: covidinquiries@samplecomapany.ca

Suggestions: covidsuggestions@samplecomapny.ca

Stay safe and healthy, team!

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