Memos and E-mail
Unit 1: Communications
The Purpose of Memos
Memos have a twofold purpose:
◦ they bring attention to problems; and
◦ they solve problems.
They accomplish their goals by informing
the reader about new information like
policy changes, price increases, or by
persuading the reader to take an action,
such as attend a meeting, or change a
current production procedure.
Header: 1/8 of the memo
Opening, Context and Task: 1/4 of the
Summary, Discussion Segment: 1/2 of the
Closing Segment, Necessary Attachments:
1/8 of the memo
◦ TO: - to whom the memo is written
◦ FROM: - who the memo is from
◦ DATE: - current date of memo
◦ SUBJECT: - precise, short point of memo
Opening, Context and Tasks
◦ a brief overview of what the memo will be
the event, circumstance, or background of the
problem you are solving.
describe what you are doing to help solve the
"To determine the best method of promoting the new fall line, I will....“
Summary and Discussion
◦ If your memo is longer than a page, you may
want to include a separate summary segment.
The discussion segments are the longest portions
of the memo, and are the parts in which you include
all the details that support your ideas.
Closing and Attachments
◦ After the reader has absorbed all of your
information, you want to close with a
courteous ending that states what action you
want your reader to take.
◦ Necessary Attachments
Make sure you document your findings or provide
detailed information whenever necessary.
Reminders when Writing Memos
A Memo is intended to be a “very” direct means of
It is most often used by an employee or member of a business or
organization to write to another employee or member of that
business or organization.
Memos are used to communicate company policy or
organizational information to many people in a group or at a
A top page margin of 2” is recommended
It should have a margin of at least one inch on all remaining edges
It is always written on 8½"x11" (or metric equivalent) unlined
Many business and organizations have standardized memorandum
stationary that already contains the organization logo
2” top margin
Each of the four headings are DS (double
spaced) and keyed in all caps followed by
a colon (:)
After the colon, the Tab key is pressed to
line up the text that follows
Mind Your Manners: Think of the basic rules
you learned growing up, like saying please and
Watch Your Tone: Merriam-Webster defines
tone as an "accent or inflection expressive of a
mood or emotion."
Be Concise: Get to the point of your email as
quickly as possible.
Be Professional: This means, stay away from
abbreviations and don't use emoticons (those
little smiley faces).
Use Correct Spelling and Proper
Grammar: Use a dictionary or a spell checker
— whichever works better for you.
Ask Before You Send an Attachment:
Because of computer viruses, many people
won't open attachments unless they know the
Wait to Fill in the "TO" Email Address:
Make sure you are completely through proofing
your email and you are sure that it is exactly
the way that you want it.
E-mail at Work
Personal e-mail usually not allowed at work
Be careful what you write in an e-mail
E-mail may be forwarded by mistake
Have a long life even after deleted
E-mail use in the workplace is convenient an
Court Rules Against Work e-mail Snooping