Primer Lesson 2: Email is for Good News

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Effective principals are aware of the limitations of using email for communication.

Email is a tool that is best suited for sharing good news or general information.

These are the things you should avoid using email for:

  • Responding to stakeholder concerns, other than acknowledgement of receipt
  • The initial communication of a new campus policy
  • As a substitute for avoiding a difficult conversation.
  • Collectively punishing the staff for the transgressions of an individual
  • Defending an unpopular decision
  • Carbon copying someone's supervisor so that they know you "mean business" this time
  • Anything requiring more than five sentences to explain

A face-to-face conversation, phone call, or staff meeting are all more suitable than email for handling one or more of the problems listed above.

The thing to remember with email is that even though it feels like you are solving a problem when you press send, you aren't.


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