Embarrassing e-mails - Business Works
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Embarrassing e-mails

by David Jones, Product Manager, Ebuyer.com Sending e-mails is a large part of many workers' jobs and many industries simply wouldn't cope without them. Sometimes, however, an e-mail can accidentally end up in the wrong hands or be sent to the wrong person, resulting in embarrassing consequences. David Jones, Product Manager at eBuyer relates some of those moments we all dread.

To find out the UK's funniest e-mail mishaps, we collected data revealing the most humorous ones that have been received in the workplace. The survey of 2000 UK workers uncovered e-mail disasters, from disastrous spelling errors and messages accidentally 'sent to all' rather than to just the intended recipient.

The most common e-mail disaster is sending work e-mails to the wrong person. Some of the most shocking recipient errors include:

  • "My boss sent me a saucy email that was meant for his wife!"

  • "I sent an email to the completely wrong person regarding a joke that was inappropriate for work"

  • "I sent my CV for a new job to my current boss"

  • "There was a private e-mail between two office workers that were secretly seeing each other and was a bit too personal, it was mistakenly sent to everyone"

  • "I sent an e-mail complaining about a colleague's smell to the man I was complaining about"

The survey also revealed that many UK workers gossip in group e-mails, only then to accidentally send them to the person being discussed. The five most cringe-worthy examples received are:

  • "I sent an e-mail to my friend, but my boss was accidentally copied in and she found out the 'sick' day I had was actually a boozy day out: she was not happy"

  • "I sent a 'not safe for work WhatsApp message' to the whole e-mail group by mistake"

  • "A colleague was accidentally copied into an e-mail about their own 'surprise' birthday gift"

  • "An e-mail was sent to all users complaining about a member of staff when it should have only been sent to one person. It was quite funny"

  • "I went to reply to an e-mail criticising one of the managers, except I pressed 'reply all' and sent it to 32 people. It was only when someone messaged me that I realised the mistake ... The manager never said anything and I just pretended it didn't happen"

Unsurprisingly, some of those responding to the survey were given disciplinary action over their e-mailing mishaps. One respondent said, "I sent a naughty e-mail to all my contacts rather than my partner! I almost got sacked. My boss did see the funny side, thankfully".

A second person also saw a coworker get into trouble for their e-mail mistake, "Someone sent a rude joke out and accidentally sent it to a distribution list rather to the sole intended colleague meaning many people received it. They sent an apology, but were also disciplined."

Spelling errors were also a common e-mail mishap for UK workers and were the cause of embarrassment for one female from Sheffield, "I wrote 'ass' instead of 'ask' in an e-mail and when I realized it was too late and embarrassing". Elsewhere in Manchester, one female accidentally used the word 'porn' instead of 'pawn' in her e-mail. In the south, one London worker wrote, "I made a spelling error and sent to Governors and parents - instead of 'bring your wellies', I accidentally changed the first vowel to an 'i' rather than a 'e' - leading to a rather embarrassing apology e-mail being sent out straight after".

More cheeky spelling errors occurred in Edinburgh, Scotland, with one worker "sending a message to Angus Council, but spelled it 'An*s' Council" and another Edinburgh local admitted, "I once sent an e-mail saying I was too 'busty' rather than too 'busy'".

Everyone has, at one point, sent an e-mail to the wrong person, but most of the time the situation is a light-hearted joke among coworkers. Some of these responses are funny, but they are also a reminder that we need to be careful before pressing the 'send' button to our colleagues - make sure you double check who the e-mail is going to!

To see more of the UK's e-mail disasters, visit: www.ebuyer.com/blog/2019/01/the-uks-most-embarrassing-email-disasters-revealed

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