Co-workers will often CC themselves on work-related emails that they send.
But why do they do this?
It can be confusing to those of us who do not do this, especially for professionals who are just starting out in an office setting.
Should you be doing this, too? Let’s talk about it!
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What Does it Mean to CC Yourself in an Email?
When sending an email, there are a few different types of fields for email recipients.
These include: “To”, “CC”, and “BCC”.
If you are not familiar with the difference between each of these fields, here is some helpful information to explain all types:
CC: vs BCC: & To:
“To:” is used for sending emails to those who you want to pay attention to and reply or take action based on the contents of the email.
“CC:” stands for carbon copy. You use this field if you want someone to be included in the email for informational purposed but who you do not require any response or action from.
Everyone that you send an email to can see who is in both the “To” and “CC” fields.
“BCC:” which stands for blind carbon copy, works a little bit differently. This field is used for those that you want to send an informational copy to, but you do not want the other recipients to know.
This is a great field to use if you do not want the other recipients to know that person has the information, or simply if they are more private with their email address and you do not want others to have access to it.
One example of why you might need to keep email addresses private would be if you are sending an email to multiple clients, but you do not want other people to have their information or even to know who your other clients are. This helps you not to have to send a separate email per client, which can be time-consuming.
If you CC yourself in an email, it will not only send a copy to your sent folder, but you will also get a copy of your email in your inbox.
Why Do People Do This?
There are a few reasons why people might CC themselves in all of their own emails.
One reason that people do this is that they can see the entire email chain in one folder in their email. It can be confusing or time-consuming to constantly have to switch from “sent” to “inbox” to follow the flow and chain of your email conversation.
Another reason that people CC themselves on their own emails is for proof that an email was sent. Technology is not always perfect, and it can be hard to guarantee an email went through without proof.
If you CC yourself on your email, and it does not show up in your inbox, this can be a good indicator that it wasn’t sent out correctly.
Regardless of if an email sends properly or not, it will show up in your sent folder; therefore, your sent folder alone is not a good source of proof that an email went out.
Proving that your email was sent properly can be important when working with clients or even your own team-members if someone claims they never received something that they were supposed to.
Does it Make Emails Easier to Search Later When You CC Yourself?
One way it can be easier to search emails when you CC yourself, is that you can specifically search for emails that you were CC’d on.
Instead of just searching through your entire inbox, you can always search “CC:” followed by your own email address.
This will help you to weed out your inbox and help you to find what you are looking for.
Is it Recommended to CC Yourself on All Work-Related Emails?
There are a few advantages when it comes to CC’ing yourself in your emails.
These advantages include:
As mentioned before, your email will always show up in your inbox.
This is because your email just transfers from one place on your computer to another.
But if you CC yourself, then your email will have had to travel through your mail server to get to your inbox and can be a great way to find potential bugs in your server.
CC’ing yourself can help prove that the email was sent out successfully.
CC’ing yourself can be a great way to view the full conversation in one email folder instead of two, without having to filter them all into a separate folder.
Most people are not likely to proofread their email after it is sent out.
If you CC yourself on your email, it gives you a chance to read it back over, make sure everything looks good, and also catch yourself immediately if you made a mistake.
This can mean that you are able to send a corrected email much quicker.
How many times have you included “see attached” and realized that you forgot to attach it?
I know I have!
If you get your email CC’d to yourself, you will be able to notice this quickly and send the attachment right away instead of waiting for someone else to notice and point it out to you.
This can cause time-delays in whatever you are doing.
For these reasons, you might want to consider CC’ing yourself on your sent emails in the future.
What Can You do Instead of CC’ing Yourself on All Emails?
If you don’t want to CC yourself in every email you sent, there are a few things that you can do.
One way to keep organized is to create a folder for specific email chains.
That way, if you move both the replies that you get in your inbox, and the emails that you have in your sent folder, you can look at both sets in an uninterrupted chain.
If you are worried about whether or not your email was sent, you can consider using read receipts that will inform you when someone clicked into your email.
However, you may want to be careful always using read receipts as they can be annoying and can make it seem like you do not trust your fellow co-workers to check their emails properly.