Email and other messaging tools make it too easy to abuse communication, pushing us to talk even when we have nothing of substance to say, writes Tomas Kucera, VP of Business Operations at SolarWinds, in a new article on LinkedIn.

He provides some tips for improving email communication:

  • Think twice before sending emails to large distribution lists. Consider the following: Is the email relevant to all list members? Is the list up to date? Did you make it clear whether action needs to be taken?
  • Don’t abuse “reply all.” Ask yourself: Is it really necessary for my opinion on the topic to be known by everyone on the distribution list? Some mass emails require no response; others may require you to reply only to the sender. Use “reply all” only when the whole group will benefit from your response or when your input is needed to keep the conversation going.
  • Avoid “bcc” if you want to promote a culture of transparent communication. This blind communication tool should only be used when distributing information to people who shouldn’t know about each other, like external partners or customers.
  • Don’t clutter everyone’s inboxes with useless emails—simply saying “Great job!” or “Congratulations!” doesn’t help the recipient. Instead, tell the person what you appreciate about their work or provide feedback that can be used in the future.

For more of Kucera’s tips, see the full posting: “8 Email Mistakes You Make Every Day.”