Do you ever send a message and not receive one back (though you expected one)? How does it make you feel? Conversely, do you sometimes receive a message acknowledging the receipt of your communication. Feel any different?
Appropriately responding to messages does two things:
Sometimes we don’t acknowledge the receipt of a message because the sender did not request a response. Even without the request, it is a good practice to let the sender know you received the communication, and, if necessary, that you know what to do. Even a short text or email that says, “received your message,” is helpful.
What if you are copied on an email asking that a task be performed? Should you contact the main addressee? To avoid confusion, it is often wise to contact the other person that received the email to clarify who is going to perform the task. Then let the original sender know who is performing the task and when it will be completed.
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Charles Hall is a practicing CPA and Certified Fraud Examiner. For the last thirty years, he has primarily audited governments, nonprofits, and small businesses. He is the author of The Little Book of Local Government Fraud Prevention and Preparation of Financial Statements & Compilation Engagements. He frequently speaks at continuing education events. Charles is the quality control partner for McNair, McLemore, Middlebrooks & Co. where he provides daily audit and accounting assistance to over 65 CPAs. In addition, he consults with other CPA firms, assisting them with auditing and accounting issues.
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