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Why Quick Email Responses Can Damage Your Status And Authority.


Warum schnelle E-Mail-Reaktionen Deinem Status und Deiner Autorität schaden können.

This may sound a little counter-intuitive at first. Of course, a quick response time for emails and other messages – depending on the situation – has its undisputed advantages.


However, an immediate email response, especially in a professional context, can affect both your own authority and your perceived status.


In fact, there are some considerations as to why it makes sense to take your time before responding.



If you take your time with the email response, you will maintain your confidence


A quick response can certainly be interpreted as a sign of commitment. But on the other hand, it can also give the impression that you are constantly available. Which in turn can lead to your time being perceived as less valuable. Because we should not forget that there is a power imbalance between the parties involved, not only in direct dialogue but also in correspondence. And by taking the time to reply, you are signalling that your attention and your time are valuable resources.



If you don't react immediately, you are demonstrating thoughtfulness and consideration


An immediate response often leaves little room for thorough consideration and reflection. By taking your time, you can give thoughtful, precise and high-quality answers that emphasise your competence and authority.


Let's not kid ourselves, responding quickly doesn't always come across as professional and service orientated. I have experienced many situations where I was disappointed to receive an immediate response to my email. Such quick responses have often given me the feeling that there is someone on the other side who is messing around and is more concerned with keeping their inbox empty than seriously dealing with my enquiry.


Reacting too quickly can just as quickly give the impression that someone is taking the path of least resistance and working without thinking.


And I confess, even if there was nothing wrong with the content of the text I sometimes received, I still had a bad feeling that made me doubt the content. This feeling arises because a response that is too quick often suggests a certain superficiality, as if not enough time has been taken to fully grasp the depth and nuances of the topic. It can give some people the impression that the answer is more of a reflex than a well-considered process.


And because in today's working world emails are often processed at assembly-line speed, an immediate response can paradoxically also be interpreted as a lack of prioritisation – as if the request is not important enough to warrant a more thorough consideration.


By allowing yourself a certain amount of time to reflect, you can ensure that your answers are not only reflective and appropriate, but you also create the perception in the recipient that you have proceeded with appropriate thoughtfulness and consideration.


Such an approach certainly conveys an aura of competence and trust, as it shows that you are not reacting impulsively but are making considered decisions. It signals that you take every enquiry seriously and give it the attention it deserves. This can be particularly beneficial in situations where strategic thinking and thorough analysis are required.


Commitment and professionalism lie not only in how quickly you respond, but also in how effectively and thoughtfully you communicate.



If you refrain from reacting immediately, you radiate control and self-confidence.


Many people who respond immediately to messages and emails do not really do so for reasons of professionalism or commitment, as they often like to claim, but because they want to please. It is a form of humility reflex, an almost instinctive reaction aimed at gaining approval and recognition.


This urge to respond immediately can stem from a deep-rooted need for affirmation or the fear of being perceived as neglectful or disinterested. However, this very behaviour can lead to exactly the opposite result: It often gives the appearance of paying attention to the quantity of responses rather than their quality. This type of immediate response can be a sign that you are more likely to have difficulty setting boundaries and managing priorities. Rather than being perceived as a sign of commitment and professionalism, such behaviour can be interpreted as a lack of self-management and strategic communication.



Reading a long email is like slogging through a dull novel, hoping the ending will be a pay raise.

This point has nothing to do with the speed or delay of the reply, but it comes to mind at this point because it fits so well and is no less important:


Stop writing long emails!


Not only are long emails unprofessional, but nobody reads them. And even if someone does read them, nobody knows what to remember afterwards.


Anyone who really believes that more words are a sign of higher quality is completely wrong. Long e-mail texts are much more likely to produce the opposite of what is intended. They lead to the sender being taken less seriously. Long and rambling emails are often interpreted as a sign of a lack of competence and an inability to focus on the essentials.


Anyone who has ever written a really long email and only received a short two-liner in response will know the unpleasant feeling of inferiority. You suddenly realise that your detailed message has not received the same importance or attention that you gave it when you wrote it. This gives you the feeling that your own efforts and thoughts did not have the expected value or influence. This creates a discrepancy between the effort you have put into the communication and the perceived appreciation from the recipient.


In this context, the length of a response can often reflect a power dynamic, with brevity and conciseness often being interpreted as indicators of authority and control, while sprawling, long email texts can tend to be interpreted as a sign of an inferior position.


In any case, the following applies:


Writing a long email is like explaining a joke; if you have to explain it, the punchline gets lost in the process.



 

Onlinekurs:

Wie Du erfolgreiche E-Mails verfasst, die überzeugen und Ergebnisse erzielen.


Onlinekurs: Mut zur Konfrontation

 

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