Share this page

« Pursue Peace | Main | Is "Best" a Complimentary Close? »

January 21, 2006

TrackBack

TrackBack URL for this entry:
http://www.typepad.com/services/trackback/6a00d8341c02a553ef00d8355b722269e2

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference With Best Wishes:

Comments

Daan

Hello lynn,

This blog of yours is great!
I am a student from the netherlands, forced to do job-applications in english, beceause the man doing the meetings is italian.
This was very helpfull!
Thanks again,

Respectfully,

Daan Beijers


p.s. I got the Job!

Lynn

Thanks for the compliment, and congratulations!

bari

i want to formal best free greetings sample

Lynn

Bari, please scroll through this blog under the category "Etiquette." You will find examples of greetings. They are often called "salutations."

Steven

Dear Lynn,
I have the following question:
-------------------------------
I wrote like this to an employer whose name is Em-LastName Em-FirstName (Em-means Employer's)

Dear Sir:


Yours faithfully,
my-LastName my-FirstName (i.e I wrote my full name)
--------------------------------
I received a reply from the employer like this:

Dear Mr. my-LastName

With Best Wishes

Em-FirstName
---------------------------------

The question is in my reply, what should I use:

For example: Should I follow the same way the employer addresses and end the letter?
Thank you.

Lynn

Steven, you do not need to do exactly what the employer did. In fact, his capitalization and lack of punctuation on the closing are both not standard (that is, considered wrong).

I do not know which country you live in, but in the U.S. and Canada "Yours faithfully" is old-fashioned. I would suggest "Sincerely" or "With best wishes," which the employer used.

I am a bit perplexed about "Your last name, your first name." You should both type and sign your name with first name first. Maybe I misunderstood what you meant.

As the employer becomes less formal, you may become less formal--unless you are 21 and the employer is 45+. In general, follow the employer's lead.

I hope that helps!

Lynn

Steve

I was once told by an Englishman that he was taught never to sign an anonymous Dear Sir or Madam letter "sincerely" but rather "yours faithfully". So this may be English style.

Personally, I am a fan of simply signing "best wishes", but am beginning to doubt my choice as I have a lot of ESL students who tend to copy my signature and this tends to be a bit too greeting card-like for more formal correspondence. So it was with interest that I landed on your comments regarding with best wishes. Maybe I'll switch to warm or fuzzy wishes to make clear that I'm a bit off...

Lynn

Steve, I love "Warm and fuzzy wishes"! Let's just hope your ESL students don't follow your lead!

Lynn

Viktorija

Hello Lynn,

I was looking for some inspiration, when I came across "Spitefully" or "With strong malice". I have not laughed for a long time as hard as about this. "Sincerely" is definitely better! Thanks for not only great tips but also to make me laugh!

Viktorija

Katherine

Hello Lynn,

I have a question in regards to a complimentary close when writing a letter to a customer who has presented a dishonoured cheque to our company.

It is standard practice to give the customer 2 weeks to rectify the problem before we take the matter further.

Is it okay, considering the customer is receiving the benefit of the doubt for the 2 weeks that a mistake may have occured, to close the letter with "regards" (even though you don't like it). A collegue suggested "yours faithfully" but I haven't heard of that closing in a long time.

Any suggestions?

Lynn

Katherine, I think "Regards" is fine in your situation. In fact, I am warming to that closing for general use. "Yours faithfully" seems old-fashioned, in part because I have never seen it used in business.

Lynn

jojo

Dear Lynn,
How long has "warm wishes" been around? For me that sounds very personal and I would never feel comfortable ending a business letter with it. How common is that?
Sincerely,
Jojo

Lynn

Hi, Jojo. I don't know how long "Warm wishes" has been around. It is not for use as a closing to a stranger. It's for warm relationships. I use it when I close letters or emails to clients I know well, especially when I am saying thank you to them.

My best,

Lynn

snoo

Hello Lynn,

I have a question about how to end a Birthday Card for my English teacher he is from England.

As he is my favorite teacher,I would like to use "Your loving student" as a closing.

Could you give me an advice?
Thank you.

Lynn

It is very thoughtful of you to send or give a birthday card to your teacher from England. You can close with one of these phrases: "Best wishes," "Warm wishes," or "Very best wishes."

"Your loving . . . " is not appropriate to a teacher. It suggests devotion and intimacy that are a step beyond the teacher-student relationship. It would be correct for your husband, husband to be, father, grandfather, uncle, or brother (or for women in similar roles).

Lynn

SS

We learned recently that a neighborhood friend/acquaintance has been diagnoses with a terminal illness. Can you provide an example of an appropriate closings for a handwritten note that I am leaving in a card?

Lynn

The closing of such a delicate, important message should complement what you say in it. Here are some possibilities:

Sincerely,
Warmest wishes,
Wishing you peace,
All my best wishes,
Thinking of you,
Warmly,

I hope those help.

rick

What about when someone ends an e-mail with "thanks".

Like:

Please check price and availiability of the parts listed.

Thanks,
George

I find it a bit presumptuous. However, if it accepted these days, I guess I'll live with it. What d'ya'll think?

Lynn

Rick, I think that use of "Thanks" is fine. George starts with "Please" and ends with "Thanks"--very polite.

If it seems presumptuous to you, think of it as "Thanks for considering my request." Or if George is your boss, "Thanks for handling this."

Lynn

Chris

George,

Like you, I find a closing 'Thanks' presumptuous at worst and carelessly dismissive at best. I am disappointed that Lynn should find it acceptable, but not surprised as the standard of communication in email is generally appalling, 'ain't it?

However I am surprised that Lynn should think 'Yours faithfully' has fallen out of general usage in business correspondence. I see it used daily in letters to this office, and it is certainly the correct 'complimentary close' when corresponding with 'Sir', 'Madam', or even 'To whom it may concern'.

Chris

Chris

George, I beg your pardon - I meant Rick!

(Curses, the morale high ground is lost through carelessness once again...)

Lynn

Hi, Chris. Where do you work that such a formal close as "Yours faithfully" is typical?

Here's what Peggy Post, the etiquette expert, has to say about the closings in her book "Emily Post's Etiquette":
"'Faithfully' and 'Faithfully yours' are rarely used but are appropriate on very formal social correspondence--letters to a high member of the clergy, a member of the U.S. Cabinet, an ambassador, or anyone holding an equally important post."

I don't correspond socially with such a lofty group--and I have never seen "Yours faithfully" used in business correspondence.

On the subject of "Thanks," when we get irritated because someone closes a message with that word, something else is going on. It's not about the close--it's about the relationship.

Lynn

Les Hampton

Hi Lynn,

Here in the UK it is correct to close business letters where the name of the recipient is not known with Yours faithfully. Where the recipients name is known you would end Yours sincerely. The use of punctuation here, eg Dear Mr Smith, and Yours sincerely, seems to be classed now as wrong - although I still use it myself. It seems though, that in electronic communications any ending will do. So...

All the best,

Les H.

Lynn

Les, thanks for your input. I always appreciate learning what is correct across the oceans.

I am looking for a manual to help me with UK writing style and will probably get the "Oxford Style Manual." However, I do not know whether it includes advice on business letters and email. Can you recommend a guide?

Lynn

R

Your blog has been very helpful! Thank you!

Vitaliy

Dear Sir or Madam,
I am writing in the hope that you will able to give me some information about busines letter.
It would be better if you send me an example for me.
I have to write a letter to my manager (who is on an extended business trip)
I would like to inform him that I wish to apply for a post in another department of the company.
Also, I have to explain the reason why I am applying.
Also, I have to ask him to recommend me for the post.
I hope you can help me.
Yours faithfully,
Vitaliy

Dr Brad

Interesting discussion. I routinely use 'Yours faithfully,', but I am an English Doctor. The standard rule here is that if you do not know the recipient or only know them formally (for example, you would not address them in person using their Christian name), 'Yours faithfully,' is more suitable than any of the other options. That said, a review of the letters on my desk and they are all signed off with 'Yours sincerely,'.

Stephanie

Do I use Congratulations or Best Wishes as a greeting on a Baby Shower Gift Card?

Lynn

Congratulations.

Rhonda

I am making out Christmas cards and have a question. I would like to say "Merry Christmas and Warmest wishes to all from OUR NAME" Do I capitalize wishes, or even warmest?

Thanks!

Lynn

Rhonda, don't capitalize "warmest" or "wishes." There is no reason to do so.

Rebecca

I need to write a short dedication to a business partner on the event of initiating a new program. The note will be placed on a small gift. Will it be okay to write:
We value our partnership with you and look forward to a rewarding successful program.

Lynn

Yes, that sentiment is fine. Insert a comma after the word "rewarding."

Sergey

Dear Lynn,

Thank you very much for this concise, but a very practical blog.
In 4 minutes, which I have spent reading the text above, I have learned something valuable.

Many thanks and best Christmas Wishes!

Sergey

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Sergey, best wishes to you too!

Lynn

vaibhav

Hi Lynn,

What u think about 'Thanks & Regards' used together?

Brinda

can i end my email as below,

Greetings, Brinda

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi, Brinda. "Greetings" is more likely to be a message opener than a close. I wouldn't use it at the end of an email.


Vaibhav, I am sorry I missed your message. "Thanks and regards" is acceptable. However, I would prefer stating a sincere thank-you in a sentence rather than just tacking one onto a close.

Note that "regards" is not capitalized. Only capitalize the first word of the close.

Lynn

Mohamed

Dear Lynn,

If I'm ending an email with: "Have a good day", what's the best punctuation?

Thanks in advance,

Mohamed

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

"Have a good day" should be followed by a period or an exclamation point. The exclamation point makes it a friendly shout.

Have a good day.
Have a good day!

Lynn

Mary Carballal

Hi,

A co-worker insists that using a semi-colon is acceptable in a complimentary closing. I disagree and feel that a comma is the appropriate punctuation after Sincerely yours. I'd love to hear your opinion.

Sincerely yours,

Mary

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Mary, your coworker is wrong. Ask him or her to cite a reference book published in the last 25 years to support that semicolon. Your request should end the discussion.

Lynn

Ahmed Hamdy

Could you please add some "Reasons for writing"

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi, Ahmed. I am afraid I do not understand your comment. Please explain.

Lynn

ome rhamdani

Dear Lynn
In signature "Regards" whould be with a capital "R" or otherwise?

Omer

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

You are correct. The closing looks like this:

Regards,

Lynn

Omer

What is the write word to start an email, to be sent to more than one recipient.

"Dear Concerned"
Or
"Dear Concerns"

Regards

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Omer, I would not use either of your choices.

The appropriate greeting depends on the audience, your relationship with them, and your reason for writing. Here are three possibilities:

Dear Team,

To all program attendees:

Hello, everyone.

Lynn

Omer

If its an official email & addressed to seniors, will “Dear team” be appropriate ?

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Omer, if you mean senior executives, "Dear Executive Team" would probably work.

If you mean senior citizens, "team" would not work. You would have to think of a category that suits your readers.

Lynn

Omer

I meant Senior executives from different departments, addressed by a single email.

Omer

Response awaited please!

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Omer, you asked whether "Dear Team" would be appropriate, and you added that they are senior executives.

I suggested "Dear Executive Team." Is there some other information you are seeking?

If they regard themselves as an executive team, the greeting is appropriate. If they do not regard themselves as a team, "Dear Executives" may be the better choice.

Lynn

Alexis

Lynn,

Can I end up with "Great day(s)" "Good day(s)" or "Blessings"
in business Emails.

Thanks!

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi, Alexis. In the United States, "Blessings" is not something you will see at the end of business emails--unless you work in a church or a spiritual organization. I do not know whether people in other countries use such a close.

"Have a great day" and "Have a good day" are acceptable closes on friendly emails. "Great day" and "Good day" do not seem complete.

Lynn

onur

Hi Lynn,

I want to write a formal Christmas message to some top managers. Can you please give me an example?

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Onur, think about what you want to say to the top managers. Then look at my posts "Holiday Greetings Made Easy" and "Sending Holiday Greetings" for examples of appropriate language. (Insert those titles or the word "Christmas" in the search box on this site, and you will find the posts.)

Good luck!

Lynn

Omer

Dear Lynn
Hope things are well, thanks for your kind response you have been indeed very help full.

At work, sometimes I have to send a single email to more than one reciepant(addressed to venders to my company), can i start my email with "Gentlemen", if not kindly suggest otherwise.

thanks
Omer

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi, Omer. The gentlewomen you write to will not appreciate "Gentlemen." You might try one of these:

Dear Vendor,
Dear Business Partner,
Greetings!

Please search this blog under "email salutations" for more ideas.

Lynn


Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Birenda, I suggest this version of your message:

"Hearty congratulations and best wishes to ______ Bank for your 25 years of banking excellence."

Points:
1. You can use "glorious," but it is a strong word. "Excellence" may be enough to express the positive feeling.
2. Note the spelling of "excellence."
3. Leave out the quotation marks, of course.

What a good idea to send a note!

Lynn

Chris

Hello Lynn,

Thanks for your website. There is a lot of very helpful information here.

I started wondering whether it is acceptable to use 'Best regards'. To be honest I have never seen an email using 'Yours sincerely' - but I still feel slightly unsure when I'm writing to someone I don't know.

I think I'll stick to 'Best regards'.

I do have one question: in the UK most people use Ms, Mrs, Mr without the full-stop. Would you consider that acceptable? Mrs. seems old-fashioned to me.

Thank you very much.

And now my favourite complementary closing:

I avail myself of this opportunity to renew to you the assurance of my highest consideration,

Chris

(From Fowler's excellent guide to Modern English, found at University of Birmingham, Dr(.?) Mark Lee)

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi, Chris. Thanks for stopping by with comments and questions.

"Best regards" is fine as a complimentary close. The formal "Yours sincerely" is not common these days, even in letters. I would not use it in email.

I am afraid I am not an expert on communication in the UK, so I cannot comment on the absence of full stops with Mr, Ms, and Mrs.

The complimentary closing you shared from "Fowler" is wonderful. Thank you!

Lynn

Beverly

When following up with someone after a networking event, can you please tell me the best way to congratulate someone on the pending birth of a baby girl (the couple's first child)? Many thanks.

Beverly
Atlanta

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi, Beverly. Try this:

Congratulations on the pending birth of your first child.

You might also add this:

Best wishes for your daughter's safe, joyful delivery.

Lynn

Jackie

Hi

I would like to know if it is ok to use Yours sincerely and best wishes together at the end of a letter to a client.

In England we use yours sincerely when we know the name of the person we're writing to, but my boss would like to use best wishes as well. Is that allowed? I thought

Yours sincerely,

and best wishes


his name

seemed a little odd. Can you tell me the best way to get both closes together, or should we just use one or the other?

Thanks in advance

Jax

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Jax, using both of them would be odd. Here is a compromise that uses parts of both:

Sincere best wishes,

His Name

sara

Hi I am enrolled at a community college and my teacher said you cannot use sincerely in a conservative business letter. I disagree. Is it okay to use sincerely in a conservative business letter?

Sara

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi, Sara. One of the rules of business writing is to write for your audience. That means if your teacher asks you to write a "conservative" business letter with a closing different from "Sincerely," then that's what you need to do for the assignment.

The closings in the January 2006 post (above) are listed from more formal to less formal. It appears that your teacher wants you to use a more formal close.

Lynn

David Harvey

Dear Lynn,

Thank you for your informative article! I’m also rather impressed that you follow a comment thread on a 6 year old piece – it is truly an enduring topic. After having learned that nobody* uses “respectfully” as a complimentary close, I latched onto various types of Regards. Here are my questions:

1) Varying internet folks warn that “Warm regards” is not appropriate for someone you have never corresponded with; the suggestion seems to be that “Kind regards” or “Best regards” are better, and that “Warm regards” should be saved for a closer associate. I rather like “Warm regards,” is it ok to use?

2) Business correspondance increasingly seems to involve rapid back and forth emails. I feel a little silly putting a full closer at the end of every email. What about dropping to “WR, (line break) David Harvey” or just “-David Harvey”. On a related note, is dropping "Dear John" at some point in the email conversation ok?

3)Titles: I work at a big(ish) company, and certainly not everyone knows who I am. A full version of my close to an outside person might read:

Warm regards,
David Harvey
Junior Systems Administrator
Shakespeare Theatre Company

What are your thoughts on titles in signatures? Should I drop the company name when I’m emaling other internal employees? Should I include title the first time I email someone and then drop it from subsequent correspondance?

Thank you in advance for your consideration.

Warm regards,
David Harvey

*My research suggests that people in the military use Respectfully. Senior officers to lower officers I think? But as neither I nor anyone I write to is in the military I've dropped using it.

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi, David. Yes, interest in this topic goes on and on.

Here are my answers:

1. I believe "Warm regards" is not appropriate until you know someone, until you have a warm connection. This is my opinion--not a fact.

2. When you are emailing back and forth, you can drop both the greeting and closing. I normally restart the greeting if I have not communicated with someone for at least a few hours.

Feel free to use just "David" as a closing signature if you are on a first-name basis with your reader. I normally sign "Lynn" even in back and forth messages.

3. You can drop the company name when you are emailing people within your company, as long as you are writing from your company email account. In an email thread, you can drop your signature block after your first message. However, I would keep the signature block for all future messages.

Keep in mind that people will forward your emails to others who do not know you.

I believe I have answered all your questions. Have fun!

Lynn

Graham

Dear Lynn
I have written a book which is doing well but a correspondent has pointed out a catalogue of errors, most of which concern use of hyphen versus joined word, versus separate words. For example, hand picked or hand-picked, jack knife or jacknife.
Is there a golden rule for this problem? Please note I am referring to England, not America.

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi, Graham. I would not worry about hyphenated or unhyphenated words if your book has already been published. Hyphenated words change over time, and what is correct today may be outdated tomorrow.

There is no golden rule that applies in all situations. However, my informal rule is to ask myself if the words work separately, for example, "hand picked successor." The person is not a "hand successor," so "hand-picked" must be hyphenated.

In addition to my informal rule, I use a current dictionary. I would imagine you would use the "Oxford English Dictionary."

When you write a new edition, hire an expert copyeditor to check the punctuation and usage.

In the meantime, ignore people who focus on things like hyphens. No doubt you were writing about important ideas. That's where the focus should be, unless the errors actually get in the way of your meaning.

Thanks for your question. Good luck!

Lynn

Christian

Dear Lynn,

Thank you for this article and thanks to the readers for their comments. I just received an email from a potential employer about when they plan to make their hiring decision. I have corresponded with this person via email sever times and was just flown out to their campus for a face-to-face interview. The potential employer signed their email with "best wishes" and their first name. In many previous emails they had just signed their first name, or used "thank you" and their first name. When I saw them use "best wishes" for the first time I panicked. I began to read into those two words (like reading tea leaves) and immediately thought that "best wishes" meant "good luck with your future" or "thanks, but no thanks." I hope I'm wrong. From the thread above, I think I'm over reacting.

My best,
Christian

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi, Christian. I believe you are overreacting. And I hope you are too!

I hope you hear good news from the employer soon.

Best wishes,

Lynn

Lynny

Lynn,

Thank you for the tips and humor.

I was working with someone, who I hated because she was getting my boss to demote me, and I found that not replying to her emails worked very well, instead of faking politeness. But when I did respond, I just put a "-" and my name.

Now I had a client that annoyed me, and I started writing extra formal and warm emails to her, and it really helped our communications.

I figure it's all about picking your battles, and starting off on the right foot with all clients and colleagues. So thanks for giving me more ways to do it, so it never gets stale.

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi, Lynny. Thank you for telling us about the warm emails working well with your annoying client. I am glad you had that positive experience.

Thanks for taking the time to comment.

Lynn

Lilla E

Would you ever use; Accordingly as a closing in a business letter, I saw it and thought it looked strange....

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

"Accordingly" as a closing? Never!

I cannot imagine what the writer intended.

Lynn

keikhosro

Hi, Lynny. Thank you so muuch for telling us such an information. I have a question; Would you ever use"with best wishes for you and his firend" in letter writting

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hello, Keikhosro. I believe the closing you want is this:

With best wishes to you and your friend,

Lynn

Camille

How do you hyphenate three-word phrases? Example - viability dye-negative cells OR viability-dye-negative cells?

Thanks.

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi, Camille. It depends. If the cells are "viability cells" and "dye-negative cells," you need just one hyphen: "viability dye-negative cells."

However, if the word "viability" is part of the adjective "dye-negative," you need two hyphens.

Lynn

Cecilia

Hello,
I need to know the difference between Best/Kind regards and Warm regards. Is it a question of "how close" you feel to the person you are writing to? A colleague, who lives in Germany, sent me this in his reply when I wrote "Kind regards". When I asnwered back, I wrote as he did it, but I really don't know the difference. Could you let me know, please?
Thank you in advance.
All the best,
Cecilia

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hello, Cecilia. "Best regards" and "Kind regards" are more neutral than "Warm regards."

As you can guess, "Warm regards" communicates more warmth. However, the difference is subtle, and many people may not even think about it.

I hope my response helps.

Lynn

Cecilia

Thank you!

Diane

Lynn,

What is the best way to end a cover letter sent with a resume?

Sincerely,
Diane

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi, Diane. If you are referring to the closing, you might use these:

Best wishes,
Best regards,
Sincerely,
Sincerely yours,

If you are wondering about the final sentence, it depends on what comes earlier. You might use:

"I look forward to hearing from you."

Lynn

Matt

Hi Lynn,

i see some emails add a "," at the end of 'Regards' in the compliementary closing, while some others don't. Can you kindnly advise which is more appropriate or are both acceptable?

Many thanks.

Matt

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi, Matt. In the United States and Canada, we use a comma after the complimentary close. In England, they do not, according to people who have commented on this blog.

I do not know the norm in other English-speaking countries.
Lynn

khoshi

Hi Lynn

i have read all witting which is above it is really helpful for me well done you have done a great job, can you help me on this too, some one send me this (( hope you are doing well and best wishes for your exam )) what should i write respectfully for replaying her

sincerely
khoshi

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Khoshi, just write this:

Thank you for your good wishes. [or]

Thank you for thinking of me and sending your good wishes.

Lynn

Khoshi

Dear Lynn

I want to ask my teacher to email me how much did i take from the exam he told me i will send u by email but he didn't and i really need to know how much did i take please help me to send him a polite email to ask him this, thank you
yours sincerely
Khoshi

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Khoshi, I don't know how you address your teacher (Mr.? Ms.? Professor?). You might try the message below.


Dear Professor,

I will be very grateful if you will let me know how well I did on the exam.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Sincerely yours,

Khoshi

khoshi

Thank you very much dear Lynn

jennifer

Hello Lynn, Please could you possibly advise how to write to send best wishes for an event when I am attending this (along the lines of 'very much look forward to meeting you at the event and ....'. This would be very much appreciated. Best regards, Jennifer

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi, Jennifer. Just write it. You know what you want to say.

Lynn

Asa Moore

Dear Lynn,

Thank you for this resource. I sincerely agree that "warm" or "warmest" does not belong in business correspondence closures, unless/until a close relationship exists; otherwise, it sounds too personal or too shmoozey (if you know what I mean).

Sincerely,
Asa

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Yes, Asa. I know what you mean, and I agree.

Thanks for stopping by.

Lynn

Maria

Hi Lynn,

Is it grammatically correct to finish a letter with

From,
Your friends at (business name)?

I am particularly interested in the positioning of comma after "From".

Sincerely,
Masha

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi, Maria. It is not correct to finish a letter with "From" with or without a comma.

Lynn

The comments to this entry are closed.

Share this page
Google
Business Writing with Heart - How to Build Great Work Relationships One Message at a Time
Assistant Edge
Error Quests
Take your writing from acceptable to excellent.