If the answer is yes, I would like to share a tip that can help you to build instant rapport with your long-term clients. Once we know their holiday or vacation plans, to show our support we can send them a short note two or three days before their vacation starts to ask them if they have any last minute requests before their vacation starts. Below are a few example email formats that can help with this kind of acknowledgment and request.
Before I jump in to the emailing writing tips and examples if you are in India and your counterpart is in the US or Europe, keep in mind that INDIA IS AHEAD of the other time zones, so if there are no meetings scheduled for a week before the vacation or holiday period, do send your request at least 4-5 days before they start their holidays so that there is enough time for them to see it and respond to it.
Example email to send before the Christmas and New Year Holiday:
Good day. Happy Holidays. I know you would be taking a 10 day vacation for the Christmas and New Year holiday soon. I am also writing to ask if you have any last minute requests I can fill before the holiday starts.
Example email to send a few days to a week before Independence Day:
I heard it’s US Independence day on July 4th. I think you may be going on a long weekend. Would you like me to fill any last minute requests before you start your holiday? Thank you and have a great break!
Your client or US based onsite colleague would answer the email one of two ways: with a request or with a thank you for asking, but there are no other requests at this time. Regardless of the answer received, it’s customary to send one more acknowledgement email back. Examples follow:
Thank you for letting me know there are no last minute tasks. Now you can surely rest easy on the break! We shall catch up after your return on January 3rd.
Some Requests Were Made:
I have received your email. I noticed there are two quick tasks you’d like me to do before the vacation starts. I am glad I asked as we have two business days before the vacation starts, and these tasks will take about a day a half. I will keep you updated as I complete the tasks or if I have any questions.
Tips on Acknowledgement Emails:
It’s good to add a little small talk in the email so it doesn’t sound so directive and blunt. Small talk makes it sound natural and conversational. It also adds a friendly tone to the words on the page. The reader will feel more at ease with a little friendly banter. Try it out and let me know how it goes!
Teams in India have asked me for the need of writing such emails when they already have a task list in hand. Some in India have asked me, “Won’t the client think I am not being responsible if I do this? Won’t it destroy trust rather than build it?”
Since I have worked in Kerala for about 7 years, I do understand the context behind this question. While this could be problematic in India, it actually is a trust building in general with US Americans. Most US Americans would find this keeps communication open and transparent. It also shows that you are taking initiative in case there are any last minute requests. However, as Americans tend to be direct in many situations, one could write an email with a bit more detail adding in what tasks are on the to-do list, then asking if there’s anything to add. For example, to expand on a sample from above:
I heard it’s US Independence day on July 4th. I think you may be going on a long weekend.
As we discussed last week, I am working on the XYZ release, with the release date being July 10. The final tasks in the release are A, B, and C. They are all on schedule as of now. However, in case there was anything you or your team would like to adapt or adjust, I am open to hearing your thoughts.
In case there are any last minute requests before you start your holiday, I will await your email. I can also jump on a quick call. Feel free to IM or ping me. Thank you and have a great break!
Note, that in this email while I am directly asking for any last minute requests, the English is quite indirect. I am not using ‘you statements’ nor asking “Why you” questions. Meanwhile, the language is quite active, and not passive. All of these are concepts I facilitate with you in one to one sessions or small group virtual, live email training programs to help you communicate with more ease with global counterparts. Contact us for more information.
Jennifer Kumar helps build effective onsite and offshore teams through cross-cultural and business communication coaching programs. Contact us for more information.
How did it go? A common question in American English
Examples of Acknowledgement Emails
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Updated Dec. 2019, May 2020