One of my tasks in my internship was to create incentives and a social media campaign to promote the City’s Green Business Recognition Program. In this task, I had to sift through all of the licensed businesses within my city boundaries (over 3,000) to pick and choose businesses I think could qualify. These businesses included individually owned convenience stores, retail stores, mechanic shops, salons, office spaces, among others; and would have to demonstrate sustainable efforts to qualify that included: waste reduction, pollution prevention, recycling, purchasing, energy efficiency, water conservation and quality, stakeholder engagement, and transportation.
I finalized my list of potential qualifying businesses and decided to write up an email inviting them to look into the program. Once I got the approval on my email from my supervisor, I added all 1,300 of my selected businesses to a mass email and sent it off, CC-ing my supervisor in the email. Not two minutes had gone by and my supervisor was at my desk, telling me I sent the email incorrectly. Instead of BCC-ing all of the businesses, I just added all of their email addresses into the “To” line. I was informed that mass emails like that should be sent “To” my email address and then the actual recipients will be BCC’d so they cannot see all the others.
This issue did not have the easiest fix. I had to unsend the email which only removed it from the inboxes of recipients who hadn’t opened it yet, and then input all 1,300 emails into the BCC section. Although I received some replies from business owners informing me that the way I sent out my email was very unprofessional, I still got some businesses who were interested to reply and learn more about the program. Since then, I always send mass emails in BCC and also worked with an interested business to get them certified as a Green Business in the City of Rancho Cucamonga. This was a pretty big mess up on my part but I learned a lot about professionalism from it.