Author Topic: Clients Using Personal Email Address  (Read 4663 times)

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Sparkle Star

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Clients Using Personal Email Address
« on: June 03, 2013, 07:54:19 AM »
I didn't want to hijack another thread (the poster who has a client that expects her to respond to out-of-hours emails) but it reminded me of a situation I have been putting off addressing.

A couple of clients have my personal email address - one through a mutual friend passing it on ( >:() and one because I was careless enough to respond to a message via my cell phone without checking which address it was going from.

It's the second one I have the issue with.

She's the managing partner but lives a considerable distance from the town where the business is based. She isn't a practising partner, so she comes up very two weeks, Tuesday to Friday. The rest of the time she operates remotely from her home.

She has specifically asked me to email her on HER personal email address to be sure she picks up my messages.

My issue is that whenever she messages me, she sends to both my professional and personal email addresses. I have taken a very specific decision not to receive professional emails on my phone - I do quite a bit of work with overseas contacts, so the time zones mean I have messages dropping in at all hours. Plus, I work my rear end off through the week, and will work weekends through choice.... but I also think I'm entitled NOT to work if I choose not to. As other posters have said, I'm not obligated to be there 24/7 for clients.

So...how can I politely ask her to stop using my personal email address? She's a very formidable woman and, if I'm honest, I find her very intimidating....which is why I've been procrastinating over dealing with this.
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Jones

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Re: Clients Using Personal Email Address
« Reply #1 on: June 03, 2013, 07:57:41 AM »
If she is emailing to both, why not block her on your personal?

starry diadem

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Re: Clients Using Personal Email Address
« Reply #2 on: June 03, 2013, 08:08:56 AM »
If she is emailing to both, why not block her on your personal?


This.  You don't need to say anything to her, just manage your inbox so her emails go straight to a folder or are trashed. She will never know.
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Luci

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Re: Clients Using Personal Email Address
« Reply #3 on: June 03, 2013, 10:09:32 AM »
If she is emailing to both, why not block her on your personal?


This.  You don't need to say anything to her, just manage your inbox so her emails go straight to a folder or are trashed. She will never know.

My first thought, too. Calling it Spam at one address won't affect the other.

JenJay

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Re: Clients Using Personal Email Address
« Reply #4 on: June 03, 2013, 10:29:09 AM »
My concern with blocking her without speaking to her first is that she may eventually decide it's silly to email both accounts and just stick with your personal account, thinking you check it more.

I'd email her something like "Good afternoon, I wanted you to know that *address* is my personal email account and I don't check it very often. The best way to reach me is through my professional account, *address*. I can assure you that I check it frequently during business hours and will get back to you as soon as possible. Thanks." Then, if she kept it up, I'd block her. If it results in missing a few emails you've got the "As I said, I don't check that account very often" story to fall back on.

Shoo

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Re: Clients Using Personal Email Address
« Reply #5 on: June 03, 2013, 11:16:00 AM »
Just let her know that you want to receive work related emails at your work address only.  Are you afraid she's going to be insulted by that or something?  If she is a normal, rational person, that should be all it takes and she won't think a thing about it.

Redsoil

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Re: Clients Using Personal Email Address
« Reply #6 on: June 03, 2013, 11:27:18 AM »
I think JenJay has it.
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LazyDaisy

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Re: Clients Using Personal Email Address
« Reply #7 on: June 03, 2013, 12:40:39 PM »
If you're worried the truth will get you in trouble, I think a little white lie is OK here. Let these clients know that your are deactivating that account and they can only reach you at your work email. If there is any way you can set up an auto response for only certain email addresses, you may want to have it remind them to go to your work email including days and times that you will be available to respond. After a bit, block them. If they have the temerity to ask for your new personal address, you don't have one at this time.

For the clients that received it because you accidentally sent it to them, sometimes the problem is that the sender doesn't fully realize they are emailing your personal account. When I receive an email from someone their address is saved into my Outlook contacts, so the next time I start a new email to them I start typing in a name and it auto fills whichever was the most recent match. I'm not an Outlook genius, so I'm not entirely sure how to make it stop doing that for some email addresses but not all. I have vendors that have changed companies or emailed me from what I might assume to be personal accounts, and occasionally it autofills with their previous address. I only notice it when it bounces back.
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NyaChan

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Re: Clients Using Personal Email Address
« Reply #8 on: June 03, 2013, 12:42:53 PM »
Can you send her a general notification that you are no longer using the personal email for business purposes (or at all, but you might get caught in a lie if you say that) and to please direct all further communications to the work address.  If you keep it general as if it is a policy change for everyone, it won't come off as Stop emailing me at home!

Just Lori

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Re: Clients Using Personal Email Address
« Reply #9 on: June 03, 2013, 01:03:21 PM »
I had a manager ask me to do this.  She simply said that she was trying to organize her email accounts, and would I take her personal email address off the emails I sent for work.  She didn't make a huge deal out of it, and I wasn't upset or insulted.  I get that people want to reduce the number of emails they get.  I'm sure your client does as well.  It just makes sense.

Surianne

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Re: Clients Using Personal Email Address
« Reply #10 on: June 03, 2013, 01:31:40 PM »
I agree, just email her and let her know that [workemail] is the correct address to reach you at. 

She hasn't done anything wrong here -- you sent her an email from your personal address, so she has two email addresses for you.  How is she supposed to know which one is correct, if you haven't told her? 

Keep in mind that you're the one who made the mistake, not her, and you should be fine. 

AngelicGamer

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Re: Clients Using Personal Email Address
« Reply #11 on: June 03, 2013, 01:49:06 PM »
I agree with the PPs about sending an email that you won't be using the personal email anymore for work.  I also think that you should set up a filter that takes all the messages from her and puts them in a folder instead of spamming them and mark them as read.  Then, if she does forget and send it to your personal email, you have the email and won't lose out on a bit of business.




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Surianne

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Re: Clients Using Personal Email Address
« Reply #12 on: June 03, 2013, 03:11:09 PM »
I agree with the PPs about sending an email that you won't be using the personal email anymore for work.  I also think that you should set up a filter that takes all the messages from her and puts them in a folder instead of spamming them and mark them as read.  Then, if she does forget and send it to your personal email, you have the email and won't lose out on a bit of business.

This is a great idea. This way, it won't bug you in your personal inbox, but you will also have it if she does email you there.

Sparkle Star

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Re: Clients Using Personal Email Address
« Reply #13 on: June 05, 2013, 08:04:31 AM »
Just let her know that you want to receive work related emails at your work address only.  Are you afraid she's going to be insulted by that or something?  If she is a normal, rational person, that should be all it takes and she won't think a thing about it.

This is the key bit. I have learned to make copious notes during meetings and email her afterwards because she will swear blind that she didn't ask me to do something that she definitely did and vice-versa... She once asked me to devise a client feedback questionnaire for her business and later berated me for wasting so much time on something she'd never asked me to do... 

She can be quite unreasonable and is one of our more difficult clients. Unfortunately, we're not in a financial position at the moment to terminate their contract.

I clearly need to get to grips with the technical side of my phone (or perhaps how my email providers operate on a mobile basis) - I have no problem with setting up folders/blocking people etc on Outlook on my PC, but didn't know I could do that on my mobile.

Thanks for the replies.  :)
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Giraffe, Esq

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Re: Clients Using Personal Email Address
« Reply #14 on: June 05, 2013, 11:34:06 AM »
What email provider are you using?

I know in gmail, I have set up tons of filters for all the mailing lists / advertising I get.  It's not completely spam -- sometimes I find a good deal from it and so I don't want to unsubscribe.  But I also don't want to deal with them in my inbox all the time.

When I set up the filter, I tell it to have those messages "skip the inbox".  My phone then only automatically downloads the "inbox" messages -- thus skipping all of those.  I can deal with them when I'm at a computer, or by explicitly going into that folder on my phone and downloading that folder's messages.

If you have gmail, feel free to PM me for specific instructions.  If you have something else, I might be able to help and if I can't, I'm sure somebody around here knows what to do!