January 09, 2014, 3:55 PM — New York Magazine writer Kevin Roose may have just become a hero to many a professional with his theory of "strategic sloppiness."
Writing for LinkedIn, Roose posits that professionals may benefit from extremely casual language or the odd grammatical error or misspelling when e-mailing superiors, potential clients, etc.
As an example, he cites Snapchat’s Evan Spiegel's response to Mark Zuckerberg's initial request for a meeting:
"Thanks :) would be happy to meet – I’ll let you know when I make it up to the Bay Area."
"If you…want to show a powerful person that you're important enough to be feared and respected, you might want to try playing fast and loose with your communication from time to time. If pulled off correctly, strategic sloppiness can be a great playing-field leveler," Roose says. "As the boss, you can make as many mistakes as you want. Cutting corners is a time-saving mechanism that doubles as a display of dominance."
He argues this kind of cheek can pay off in that the higher positioned person may find you endearing, impressive and someone with whom they want to do business.
Click below for more real-life examples in which this calculated gamble paid off, as well as Roose's theories on when to employ it for greatest success and when to stick to traditional, formal business communication.