Management Assistance Program

Two Things Never To Do With Email

By Jim Calloway

  1. NEVER use BCC

BCC is inherently clandestine. You are sending an email to someone while providing someone else a secret copy without letting the recipient know you’ve done so. The person you have BCC’d receives it in their inbox just like a normal email. If they decide to “Reply All” to that email, then the original sender will receive their reply, be briefly puzzled and then determine you were using BCC. It can be slightly embarrassing or worse. There is an easy way to accomplish the same thing without the risk. Just send the email and then go to your Sent items to forward that just-sent email to whoever you might have been tempted to BCC.

  1. NEVER copy clients on emails to opposing counsel

It is easy to do this when you are scheduling matters, but you never want to copy clients on an email to opposing counsel for two reasons. First, your client may Reply All to everyone, which carries risks. But secondly, opposing counsel may use Reply All and directly communicate with your client. Opposing counsel should not do that. But you have provided the opportunity, and how many of us have accidentally used Reply All when we meant to use Reply?