Many event professionals are road warriors — always on the go for site inspections, on-site events, client visits, etc. — which requires a lot of texting on the clock. The constant need to be hooked to our smartphones has made “maintaining proper mobile etiquette for business more important than ever,” according to Scott Steinberg, author of The Business Etiquette Bible: Modern and High-Tech Rules, Tips and Training for Working Professionals.
Whether it is a text to a client or a quick note to the boss, here are Steinberg’s simple tips for keeping your text messages as professional as your other modes of communication:
1. Be careful with abbreviations. “Show knowledge and respect of how the other party may interpret these communications,” Steinberg writes. “Texts sent to your boss should look different than texts sent to a 20something customer, as each will comprehend and react to messages differently.
2. Don’t overdo it in the group chat. “Show courtesy of others’ time, patience, and phone bill by switching from group texts to reaching out to individuals when the conversation becomes irrelevant to others,” Steinberg suggests, “and ask that they reciprocate.”
3. Double (or triple) check who you’re texting, “especially if making a confidential statement,” Steinberg writes, “lest you risk accidentally reaching out to the wrong party.
4. Resist the emoji. “Avoid smiley faces, frowny faces, or other imagery where possible, unless you enjoy a relaxed working relationship with the other party being communicated with,” Steinberg writes. “Such expressions are much more geared toward the exchange of casual and informal conversation.
5. Introduce yourself. Are you connecting with someone you just met at an industry event for the first time via text? “Be certain to introduce yourself and/or remind them of where you met,” Steinberg writes.