Recently I did a major overhaul of a business website, which made it more user friendly, the director of the department sent out an (to the I.T Department) email on doing a great job. Of course, being a newcomer I wouldn't be able to do my job if I wasn't given a proper setup and help from my manager and peers. Is it good to reply to that email, as it is, from the director? If so, how can I make it sound more professional and thankful whilst I also thank my team?


In my experience, department/company wide emails like this don't really necessitate a personal response.

You could respond if you wanted to, but don't use "Reply All" and keep it pretty short.

Bear in mind that the director is congratulating the department, not just you. If you reply implying that you did the work all by yourself, this might be misunderstood and seen as you trying to take all the glory (even if you did do all the development work by yourself...). The director's thanks are also (presumably) directed at the people who gathered the requirements, designed the new website, tested it, and deployed it.

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    +1 for "you reply implying that you did the work all by yourself, this might be misunderstood and seen as you trying to take all the glory (even if you did do all the work by yourself...)" – VarunAgw Dec 19 '16 at 14:13

Is it good to reply to that email as it is from director, if so how can i make it sound more professional and gratitude while i thanks my team also.

Just send a simple "Thanks!" email to the director, without replying to everyone.

That shows your gratitude without going over the top.

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  • Might he tell manager that abc replied me, Wouldn't my manager mind over what is going on. – user15704 Dec 19 '16 at 11:55
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    @Nofel: You're over-thinking this. – Lightness Races in Orbit Dec 19 '16 at 12:45

Being new I would direct it to your superior to handle that sort of thing, he/she can decide if and what should be sent.

Otherwise a short message will suffice along the lines of:

Dear Sir/Madam,
Thank you for those kind words. We aim to improve the usability of our web-sites and we are glad to have made a contribution.

With kind regards:
through Alpha Bravo

Keep it short and sweet.

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    But if you write on behalf of the department, make sure the department knows about that. I have had situations where colleagues sent emails also in my name (and theirs) which led to things being said in a way I wouldn't have wanted them to be said and strange situations with the receivers of those mails. – skymningen Dec 19 '16 at 15:15
  • @skymningen A valid point, what you say stand for you and not for everyone else, unless of course, they have given their expressed consent. – Charles Borg Dec 20 '16 at 7:48

The director wanted to appreciate all people involved in that improvement and wanted to be sure all of them knew that. Period.

The one(s) that can reply to such email is the manager, or managers if it was cooperation of several teams, of the appreciated group because they are responsible for all the people under their command.

If you, as the low-branch employee, reply it may be, and will be, understood as skipping the ranks. Nobody expects anyone below the team leaders to respond to such emails.

On the other hand, if the director bumps in you personally reply, "Thanks mr. Boss" is comletely sufficient and in that case you are representing whole team. And it was not your decision to stand out.

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Unless he was getting personal like "employee X did a great job of Y", you can safely ignore it, he was just being polite. If you want to thank the team, take them out for lunch or dinner, or at least bring a cake / pizza and share.

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