Away Messages Gone Astray

Posted on May 12, 2010

It’s not often that I have to put up an email reply indicating my “out of the office” status. On a typical workday I find that I am usually sitting behind my desk, or on a rare occassion, sitting in my den with my laptop logged into my work computer. It’s not often that I notice away messages, in fact, I find that they only really speak to me once a month…the day I send out Areyvut’s e-Newsletter.

It’s sort of embarassing the number of away messages I receive from that correspondence. I then have to take my time sifting through to see which is in fact an “out of office” reply and which is an “I no longer work here…bet you can’t find me” reply. What used to be a minor annoyance for me is now something I (oddly enough) look forward to.

Over the years, I have found that these replies can say a lot about a person. For instance, I find when I am out for any period of time, I am always very formal in my message. This seems odd to me since I am an incredibley informal person in real life…I think I picked up this habit at my last employment where everyone was formal all the time (it’s no wonder I left). For some reason I just haven’t been able to shake it yet.

I admit, I like the replies that say something like “Out for the day…will get back to you with little delay!”. I wish I had the guts to post something like that…but it hasn’t happened yet. I also especially like finding out about births, weddings and other special occassions. It somehow makes me feel like I am in the know…I also like hearing about new dads taking paternity leave (which, according to the messages I receive is a lot more common nowadays).

What I like best, however, is when I find out for one reason or another than someone will be on an extended leave. “I’m out of the office right now, but will get back to you when I return on June 23, 2032. In the meantime, I’ll be checking my email intermittently.” Just a suggestion, but if you’re gone for more than one month, perhaps your email should be sent to someone who will be reading it with more frequency than “intermittently” will allow.

The good news of course is that with each new reply, I get new ideas…3 month paid vacations from Areyvut? It could catch on.

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