Over the last few years, the amount of information we consume on a daily basis has risen. As a result, more people are talking less and writing more. Some people even confuse email with one to one communication. With the pace of change at an all-time high I don’t see this issue going away. I have been paying closer attention to it and I am learning that it is an area of concern that needs to be looked at and reviewed on a regular basis.
Some things I have noticed:
People are receiving too many emails
- Important emails are being overlooked. (Especially emailed invoices and statements)
- Emails with attachments are often deleted because of potential spam risks
- Emails that are too long are often not read in their entirety. (Short emails are much better)
- People still need to learn to write their thoughts in complete thoughts and refrain from using slang, abbreviations and too many bullet items
- Many people now write with emotion. When this gets negative, you may want to start a new email. Email chain letters quickly become huge distractions.
- Limit the number of people you send an email to. Company-wide is ok now and then but should not be the norm.
Texting at work
- Works well if people are aware you might be sending them a text in the future. Used sporatically and often times the message is missed
- Remember all text messages can be saved and retrieved if needed
- If your message is a long one, ask permission to speak to the person
- Get off your butt and go talk to the person.
- Texting in a meeting room with another person in the meeting is highly discouraged
- Texting in any type of meeting is a distraction. If you need to answer a text, let people know before the meeting starts. This will help you decide how important this message is and if it needs to be answered.
- Remember to listen more than you talk
- Try not to be short
- Too many people are talking like they text.
- Remember you are talking to a live person on the other end of the line.
How can we improve our communication?
- Encourage people to call or email us. I would rather read an email message or talk to a person live than take the time to listen to a voice message. People are starting to move away from voice messages.
- Encourage people to leave their phone number or email address to get back to them. If you are going to text someone, ask for permission to do so first.
- If you send a text message to a person, always end by typing your name. Chances are your name has not been setup in their contacts.
- Make sure we check our email junk folder occasionally. It is surprising to me how many client emails I have found here. When people are waiting on you, they may not realize you never received your message. IT departments have a tough job managing email today with all the recent attacks.
- Remember face-to-face and phone are still better than email and texting.
- Also, throw in an occasional letter from time to time. Do you receive very many personal letters? It shows you are taking extra time to communicate with someone.
- Social Media – I will talk about this topic another day. Way too many items to mention here. Best advice is to be safe and really think about what you are sharing. There are always risks involved when your message goes out to the public.
Do you have a suggestion or comment on this article?
Please share your comments on the LinkedIn Blog Page.