Harvard Business Review:
People today expect an instantaneous reply to any message. But you shouldn’t reply to everything right away. If you hit “send” without fully thinking, you could start a cycle of miscommunication. Here are other options:
- A non-response response: “Got your message.” This serves as acknowledgment. Though it may aggravate someone in the midst of a negotiation or serious exchange.
- An expectation-setter: “Got it. A lot on the plate today, I’ll get back to you tomorrow.” This is often good middle ground. It’s an immediate response and resets the timetable.
- A confident pause: Don’t respond. Really. Just don’t. Pausing for at least 24 hours is a pretty good rule of thumb. Not responding can often work to your advantage, so you and the sender can think.
Adapted from “Before You Respond to that Email, Pause” by Anthony K. Tjan.