How To... Create An Email Signature
In Phone, Fax & Email By stacymorgan

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Email signature etiquette they forgot to teach you in finishing school.   

Email signatures are electronic business cards, letting email recipients know who you are, what you do, and how to contact you.  Setting up a properly formatted signature will help remind recipients what a polished professional you are every time you send email.  

Inquire About Format
Corporations place value in presenting a unified front, and you certainly don’t want to be the kink in that system.  Ask around about standard format and required disclosures.  If no standard template is available, copy your coworkers’ or boss’ email signature.  

Keep It Professional
Unless you are in the scented stationary business, save the pink background and little flowers for your personal emailing.  Simple black text in a basic font will do just fine.  

Add Company Logo
Inserting your company’s logo into your email signature reinforces branding on all your email files (particularly important if you happen to be in the marketing or design department).  

Clarify Your Title
Your email signature should include your title, but if you haven’t formally been issued a title, ask your boss for clarification.  While you may think it’s hilarious to refer to your mail clerk position as “Communications Facilitator”, the higher-ups likely will not.

Set Up Your Signature
Signature setup is generally located in the ‘Tools Menu’.  In Microsoft Outlook select the Tools Menu, then Options, then Mail Format Tab.  Press the “Signatures…” button and select “New” to create a new email signature.  (You may wish to setup an annotated signature for replies and forwards).  

Test Your Signature
Send email to yourself first to verify that your signature looks the way you intended.  Click any links, such as your email address, to be sure they direct to the correct place.  If you copied and pasted a boss’ signature for formatting and modified it for yourself, the email link likely still points to yourboss@yourcompany.com, even though it reads you@yourcompany.com (right click on the link to fix this).  

Email signatures can be a double-edged swords.  Get it right and no one will notice.  Get it wrong and you undermine your professional image before you ever get a chance to build it.  

 
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