Josh Kopelman’s vacation email is a classic example of taking a blunt approach to OOO messages.
Not only did Kopelman manage to turn his out-of-office message into an epic poem of sorts, but also, he actually went through the trouble of creating a delightfully snarky, vacation-specific email address for his recipients.
Giving the option to contact an email address containing “interruptyourvacation” provides two things — 1) A dose of humor, and 2) discouragement from actually doing what the name suggests. Plus, he prefaces it with a request for empathy, by explaining that he promised quality time to his family.
Sure, Kopelman is truthful about the fact that he’s on vacation, but he also lets the recipient know that he or she would be interrupting important family time if the first option is chosen. It states a point simply and uses humor to avoid making it sound like he wants the reader to feel guilty.
Below is an example you can use for yourself.
You got this email immediately (classic autoresponder behavior), which means I’m out of office on vacation.
While I hypothetically could reach my email, while I hypothetically do have my phone on hand, and while I hypothetically do have access to WiFi, I’d rather enjoy time with my family. My kids are growing up at the speed of a supersonic jet, and if I blink one more time, they’ll be 35. And I’ll be 73. And I don’t want that.
Looking forward to reconnecting once I’m back.