Profanity in Emails – Is it okay to swear in business email communications?

By: Standss Contributor , Apr 5th, 2022

Swearing is everywhere.

When dealing with an obnoxious client or customer, having a horrible day, or simply having a casual conversation with a coworker, profanity is certain to come out of most people’s mouths.

We hear the F**k word almost every time and for many people it is a normal habit to use swear words in their normal day-to-day communications.

via GIPHY

While you may prefer to use curse words in casual conversations, they are not appropriate in official business communications.

Goldman Sachs has apparently made a new rule regarding this issue for its employees. No curse words in emails, texts, and instant messages.

According to Business Insider, Goldman’s apparently going to be monitoring their employees’ communication for dirty words. The punishment (if they’re caught) is:

Verboten emails could get bounced to the compliance department. Others might be blocked completely, depending on the severity of the language.

There are no specific disciplinary actions in place for violators, but supervisors will summon habitual profaners to talk about how to improve their language.

In official email communications, appropriate email etiquette and safety are always recommended. In this way, you don’t run the risk of facing legal ramifications that can come with using nasty language in emails.

Here’s why you should avoid using dirty language in Emails:

Choosing to use curse words in emails gives a clear reflection of your professionalism and it will negatively impact your brand. We are responsible for establishing and maintaining our brand. And if you’re someone who does not have control over your language – you won’t act as a very good representative of your company.

People who use dirty language in emails appear to be somewhat less educated with a poor choice of vocabulary. People who are smart and educated tend to use vocabulary without profanity that represents their level of professionalism. It shows lack of control, immaturity and makes you appear less intelligent

When it comes to business email the language you use to compose the email gives a clear indication of your business ethos and values.

Keep in mind that profanity is the effort of a feeble brain to express itself forcibly. Profanity can make you feel better, but it doesn’t earn you respect.

What can you do instead?

1. Respond Professionally

Some people are just too difficult to deal with. In such a case, you should always respond intelligently and factually and not based negative emotions. Never use your business email address to respond to a client or someone else with foul language because the recipient will assess your business image accordingly. Before hitting the send button, pause and have a read- through of what you wrote. Erase impolite phrases and curses from your emails.

Another interesting question you can ask is – What if I receive emails that are full of swear and curse words?

The simple answer to that question would be never stoop to the same level of that emotion.  Respond with clarity and courtesy if you have to. However, it isn’t a requirement that you respond to that email at all, just end the conversation. Or just, report the sender of the email to the disciplinary committee of the sender’s organization.

2. Never send an email when you are angry

There are high chances that you may use curse words or foul language when you are dealing with an emotion like anger. Base your response on facts and craft a professional email that helps you get your point of view across. Be sure to use mindfulness and think before composing that email and hit “Send”.

What can you do as an organization?

If your company wants to be like Goldman Sachs, then we have the solution for you.

SendGuard for Outlook is a program that you can configure through regular expressions to detect profanity in outgoing emails.SendGuard reads each email and compares it to the rules that have already been set up in SendGuard to flag unpolite and offensive words and phrases.

You can create regular expressions like this in SendGuard:

 Disclaimer: The following screenshots use vulgar words as examples to demonstrate how SendGuard would detect them.

Profanity in Emails

As you can see that I cannot send emails that contain vulgar language and profanity. SendGuard not only stops a sender from sending nasty emails but also logs email user activity to reduce organizational liability that can come from sending confidential emails to the wrong person.

swearing in emails

By using regular expressions, you can also scan emails for credit card numbers, social security numbers and any other personally identifiable information. That’s not all, SendGuard has other powerful features that will help you improve your overall email security.

Given the amount of business conducted via email, it definitely makes sense to use a software like SendGuard.

If you’d like to learn more about SendGuard, please contact our sales team at sales@standss.com. You can also download a free 30-day trial to test out how SendGuard works for you.

SendGuard for Outlook

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