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Perfect “Out of Office” Response Message

Standing out in your career may be as simple as handling your email and telephone properly. Particularly during the summer months, your use of up-to-date automatic email responses and telephone answering messages should be in full swing as vacations and conferences fill your calendar.

Using an auto response system effectively allows you to take that much-needed break or attend an off-site conference without needing to check your phone every five minutes. It also establishes the fact that you’re not ignoring your responsibilities back at the office. By giving people the right information, your business and professional obligations can continue while you’re away.

So, what to say? When developing email and phone auto replies, keep your message short, professional and simple:

  • State that you’re out of the office and when you will return.
  • Give people someone to contact if they need assistance before you return.
  • Don’t leave run-on messages about why you’re not available or brag that you’re off on a luxury spa retreat!

Next, and very important, don’t promise a return message or call for a date earlier than you’ll be able to make the promised reply. Consider your re-entry time carefully and then deliver on the date you promise a return reply.

Finally, to avoid one of the biggest annoyances of all, remember to turn the email auto responder off and re-record your phone message when you return to the office!

Kelly Duggan is an Image Consultant specializing in executive and personal image development, etiquette & communication skills. She is a certified member of the Association of Image Consultants International. Contact Kelly at: www.kellyduggan.com.

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