From cute and quirky to the downright bizarre, we’ve all seen our fair share of strange sign offs – but are you leaving a bad impression at the bottom of your email? Corporate consultant Sue Jacques, otherwise known as The Civility CEO
, says there’s one easy acronym to keep you right.
stands for something simple,” explains Jacques. “Keep it simple. It does not have to be sophisticated.”
Jacques advises staying away from anything elaborate, like personal or philosophical quotes. “It’s a very personal statement and we have to be very mindful of the corporate brand that we are being paid to represent,” says Jacques.
is for informative – what’s important in a sign off is that it is informative. That it gives people contact information or links or whatever it is that will help people communicate with us.”
for gracious - gracious is how we choose to sign off – whatever you choose, make it gracious.” Whether its best, regards or sincerely – as long as it’s gracious you can’t go wrong.
is for neutral – that’s where things like Namaste and peace and peace out come in because they’re not entirely neutral.”
There are, of course exceptions. “If you have a yoga studio or a meditation practice that’s different,” concedes Jacques, “that would make sense but if you’re an executive in a c-suite position and you’re signing your emails off with Namaste, it might not be the most professional choice.”
According to Jacques, in addition to the all-important SIGN acronym, there are three things to be mindful of when you’re considering corporate communication:
- The corporate brand that you are being paid to represent.
- Your professional or industry brand.
- Your personal brand.
Make sure there isn’t a disconnect between the three and make sure your sign-off aligns with image you intend to portray, or you could be leaving business contacts with a bad taste in their mouth.
“It’s important to note that it sticks in our mind when we get a strange sign-off because it’s the last thing we see. It’s the last thing we read and we can forget everything that we read previously despite its importance.