Body language references are essential to understand the foundations of an effective "mediated communication" through e-mail, a challenge we face to convey affinity and empathy in writing.
The absence of non-verbal and physical clues in written communication makes it substantially more difficult for the recipient to receive the sender’s key information regarding emotions and attitudes. This determines the perception and final interpretation of the written message.
When we communicate by e-mail with people we know, the process is different than with strangers.
Knowing our recipients and senders provides more contextual information about their personality, affinities, communication styles, and intentions.
Therefore, e-mail exchanges have a social and relational framework that facilitates understanding and effective communication.
But there are many cases of misinterpretation, confusion, and misunderstanding of written messages between people that know each other well.
Even people who care for each other can easily badly judge the implicit intention of a written message.
However, people can adapt to the media and make it efficient. There are social-emotional and relational expressions that not only depend on non-verbal communication clues.
That is why many people can in many cases use e-mail very productively as a communication channel. They adapt their language and verbal style to the demands of written communication, according to their intentions.
Do's for email productivity (best managment practices)