Many would argue that the phrase “per my last email” is the corporate version of: “F**k you.” And I am inclined to agree. Research has shown that swearing profanities is a therapeutic way to let off steam. But in a corporate environment, it just isn’t professional. Since we’re all creative people, we’ve found ways to let our unhappiness be heard, via professional email responses, alongside the occasional thundering of keyboards.

If you too have found yourself in a situation where a boss or colleague just doesn’t get the memo, here are 10 of the best professional email responses you should type out instead of that profanity you really want to pull out:

Professional email responses: #1 CC-ing their superior (or yours)

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This may not be a phrase to be typed out in email, but it’s still a power move in the corporate world. CC-ing either one of your direct superiors now makes the entire problem a bigger one, which your colleague will need to be accountable for, since their boss now knows they’re sleeping on the job.

Professional email responses #2 “I would just like to follow up on this…”

Don’t we all love work that is dependent on the decisions of others? We might not require an immediate response, but anything more than three working days really is too much, especially if you see that your colleague still has time to post on Instagram Stories on what they had for lunch. When that happens, drop this on them and CC their direct superior for good measure.

Professional email responses: #3 “Duly noted.”

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Did someone just mansplain your job to you? Did they give you unsolicited remarks that help you in no possible way? A curt “duly noted” will send the message across that thanks, but no thanks, your help is not required.

Professional email responses: #4 “Per my last email…”

A professional work email response when you really want to say, “Please read my previous email carefully before asking stupid questions that have already been answered.”

Professional email responses: #5 “As I mentioned before…”

Why, oh why don’t people read work emails properly before they fire off questions?

Professional email responses: #6 “Thanks.”

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You probably already know the power of the full stop. It sounds curt, like you’ve been deeply offended by something the other party said. When used properly, even the most harmless of sentences can sound angry when finished with a full stop. In this case, ending a short “thanks” with a period point will tell the reader: “Thanks, but no thanks for your help.”

Professional email responses: #7 “Please advise.”

Wrongly accused of performing a task inaccurately? It can be tricky if the person you’re responding to has a higher ranking than you, or is a client. State your solution, followed by a “please advice” to throw the ball back in their park to make the decision. If it’s their decision, they will be held accountable for it.

Professional email responses: #8 “Your input has been duly noted.”

Aka, thank you for the invaluable feedback you gave me, but it was completely unnecessary and uncalled for.

Professional email responses: #9 “Please correct me if I’m wrong…” 

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“I thought we both agreed to this, but it seems like you turned your back against me so I’m calling you out and clarifying what you said and CC-ing your boss here so you won’t put words in my mouth again.”

Professional email responses: #10″Happy to discuss this in person any time.”

There’s that one colleague who just won’t get it no matter how carefully you’ve explained the task. Pulling out this card tells everyone that “if you’re too stupid to understand, I’ll come over and personally show you how it’s done so everyone can call it a day.”

Image: Unsplash/ Avel Chuklanov

Take a deep breath and go look at some cute animal videos

Work complications will always arise, and not every colleague will be able to work well together with you. While you might be tempted to lash out at them, always remember that you’re in a professional work environment — anger is the least effective way to get your point across. Take a deep breath and watch some cute animal videos to let off steam.