How to nicely remind someone to reply to important message without being rude?
Here's one example of an inoffensive request:
Sorry to press the matter, but if I need to make other arrangements I should start now. Can I count on staying at your place the night of [date]?
It provides a reason for pressing them, an apology for forcing the issue, and makes the question very clear so they don't have to go through old messages, try to remember specifics, or misunderstand/misremember.
for me I feel like I am rude when i demand an answer. I want to be nice about it.
Following up is an important part of communication, and figuring out how to do it politely can pose some challenges. However there's almost always a polite way to follow up on a question or commitment, and it's useful to start figuring out how to do it now and get over the uncomfortable aspects of it. You'll use it in many more situations than just this one.
Consider searching for articles "polite follow up" and you'll find many resources. Here are a few tips:
- Be overly polite
- Don't bring up their inaction or unresponsiveness ("You haven't responded yet...")
- Don't assume any reasons for lack of communication ("I understand you're busy...")
- Use "I" and "Me" rather than "You" - frame the request as a need you have rather than a failure on their part
- Communicate requirements - if there's a deadline, if it impacts your work or theirs, make sure they understand the limit
- Ask if they need assistance - ("Is there anything else you need to make this decision?")
- Use a different channel than the original request - in person, phone call, email, text, instant message, etc
- Supply or re-iterate important information so they don't have to spend time looking something up