Talking or emailing? Which works best for you?

Talking or emailing? Which works best for you? I think it was around 2003 where the typical person in business started to use email more than the phone. I understand why. The phone sometimes is inconvenient when they are busy or aren’t there, and it does normally take longer to get a response than with an email. However this article explores what is more effective and why between talking or emailing someone.

It is clear that for many communications email is sufficient. The discussion is not urgent, and it is simple enough to be communicated with words. However many times people try to have discussions on email that are inappropriate, and that is what I am discussing here.

As a general rule, anything that is emotional, controversial, in a grey area or uncertain should be done face to face. This isn’t just my opinion, but also that of research and practical experience. I had an HR person tell me that people misinterpret through email so he has to have face to face conversations with people. More importantly, would you want someone to deal with you as impersonal as an email?

Yes I get that conversations that touch on emotional topics are difficult. It is easy to just send an email, text or to not respond. However you really hurt yourself and the other person by not having that difficult conversation. You hurt the other person by not giving them honest feedback on what they did wrong. You hurt yourself by not expressing your concern and possibly growing from looking at something with another point of view.

An example might illustrate this point. I had a fiancée break up with me through email. She told me not to contact her by phone or email. Of course it hurt, but more importantly I didn’t get a chance to have closure. Of course since then I have forgiven her, but when you close the door by not showing the other person respect it is a disrespectful thing to do. I think that technology has allowed people to disrespect others, and I am sad that this has happened.

Another way that technology is abused is by “ghosting”. This is not ending or responding to people who you are talking to or have met. If you don’t like someone, you should give them the decency of saying goodbye respectfully. Sadly people are making this the norm of dating. It is puzzling to me. If someone was interesting to you enough to talk to them, don’t they deserve the respect of saying goodbye? I don’t see how anyone can have a successful relationship if they think that relationships are only benefits and not responsibilities as well. In a relationship you have some responsibility to be respectful to another person, and if you don’t respect them, why are you trying to be around them? Relationships take work.

My point here is that you don’t do yourself any favors by sending an email when you really should have a real voice or person to person conversation. Give yourself and others the chance to grow. Don’t email, pick up the phone or meet.