Help! My Word Document Looks Like An E-mail

Have you ever opened one of your MS Word documents and discovered it had changed and now looks like an e-mail? And I’m talking complete with a Send button and everything. Well, if that’s ever happened to you, don’t worry too much, because there is a very simple explanation and an easy fix. Let’s check it out!

The basic explanation is that Microsoft has created the option for you to send your documents via e-mail in a number of formats. When you want to e-mail a document, you no longer need to close out of the document to do so. You can just simply go to File and choose the Send To option.

A submenu will then appear, giving you a number of e-mailing options:

  • Mail Recipient

  • Mail Recipient (for Review)

  • Mail Recipient (as Attachment)

If you choose the Mail Recipient option, Microsoft will temporarily “convert” your document into an e-mail vehicle, complete with the To:, Cc:, Subject, etc. options. Once you enter the recipient’s e-mail address and click on the Send a Copy button, your document will be sent and inserted into the body of an e-mail.

Now, once you check the Mail Recipient option, you must act, because unfortunately, there is not an undo choice. If you’ve chosen it in error and you haven’t saved your changes before doing so, your only alternative is to send the document. If you aren’t ready to send the document to your intended recipient, simply enter your own e-mail address and send it off.

If you close the document and save the changes when asked, the document will keep the e-mail template active so that the next time you open the document, you will still see the same e-mailing options.

Now, if you close your document without saving the changes, your document will go back to its original format. Remember, it’s always a good idea to save your document before sending it off.

One benefit for using this option is, if you have a company logo in the header of the document, it will appear in the e-mail as well. That can add a professional flare to your e-mail, which is always nice!

The other standard mailing options are Mail Recipient (for Review) and Mail Recipient (as Attachment).

The Mail Recipient (for Review) inserts your document with this subject line: Please review: document name. This option is used for in-house or Web sharing purposes only, as the attachment is linked to the original document.

If you choose to use this option, the reviewing tools are automatically enabled and the recipient must edit the document using those tools.

When e-mailing recipients that are not within your company or do not share the same network servers, the Mail Recipient (as Attachment) is your best option. This one sends a copy of your original document, which is easily opened and edited by the recipient.

When choosing your document e-mailing options, always consider the recipient and your goals for sending it. If you don’t want the recipient to have editing access to your document or if you simply want to add a professional flare to your e-mail, choose the Mail Recipient option. If you need your recipient to edit the document, choose Mail Recipient (for Review) or (as Attachment).

Again, remember to always save your document before you send it out. That way, if you happen to click the wrong button, the fix is as easy as pie. Hope this helps!

~ Cory Buford