The 7 Emails You Should Send Every Week to Get Ahead in Your Career

There’s power in the inbox

Michael Thompson
Forge
Published in
4 min readFeb 22, 2021

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Credit: Westend61/Getty Images

Most people see email as a strictly transactional tool, using it only when they need something or owe someone something. That’s exactly why you should use it to stand out.

Taking a moment to send these seven emails every week can help you strengthen your connections, stay top of mind as opportunities come up, and learn about industry trends. (Slack messages and texts also work, but I’m into email because most people have their inboxes open all day anyway.) None of these messages should take more than five minutes to write, but each of them will go a long way in helping to advance your career.

An email saying “thank you”

Imagine opening your inbox after lunch and seeing, sandwiched between a coupon from the local pizza place and a message from an acquaintance asking if you could tweet their new article/contest/course, an email with the simple subject line: “Thank you.” Now imagine how much those two words could improve your day.

People love to feel appreciated. Instead of worrying about all the things you need to do in the morning, take a moment to thank someone for what they do for you. “Thanks for all your support during that last big project” or “I’m so glad we get to work together. Thanks for being my sounding board” is all you need to say to make an impact.

An email to someone you admire

The fastest way to get what you want is to get to know the people who already have it. Send a message to someone a step or two further ahead in their career and let them know how their work has impacted you. I like to use the formula: “Thanks to your work doing X, I’ve been able to accomplish Y.”

I’ve been sending cold emails every week for the past three years, and many of those messages have led to great phone calls, which in turn have led to close relationships and interesting opportunities. Amazing things happen when people we admire turn into friends.

An email lifting someone up

Earlier in my career, Conor Neill, a leadership expert and the person I admire most in the business world, would…

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Michael Thompson
Forge
Writer for

Co-creator of two cool kids • Storytelling Coach •.Fast Co., Insider, Forbes • Free storytelling guide here: https://bit.ly/3h1KZeT