February 16, 2015 by Dr. Barber
“You’ve got mail” is no longer the looked for event but the annoying, constantly popping noise in the office. If you choose not to turn off the sound features, the desktop computer can sound like a bad orchestra by the number of emails received in a 15-minute period. It’s really annoying.
I can (and have) sent a set of email and then wiped my personal memory – email sent; let the other guy deal with it. The problem is that the other guy may not handle email like that at all. S/he may decide to answer a day’s worth of email at night or the next day. Everyone does not absorb information the same way.
According to an article by Dr. Gordon Adler, there are 5 Myths about communication:
- Words contain meaning.
Believe it or not, words actually mean different things to different people.
- Information equals communication.
Facts vs. Transmitting information, feelings, etc. The challenge in communication is having your intent interpreted correctly.
- Communication is a product you can control.
So when you tell people not to send items to “ALL” lists, does the email stop? No, it just is buried in attempts to send to everyone without touching those annoyed by it. In fact, who receives the communications, much less who is READING it, becomes a problem.
- Good speakers are good communicators.
Maybe, maybe not. Some can and some distance themselves from the every day feel which brings up the next point.
- Emotions have no place in business communications.
I’ll admit I’m the type (engineer) that just wanted a short, pithy email – straight list of facts, short sentences, no emoticons 🙂 (shudder). But that’s not how people work. They want to be touched by a person – not a list – and they will respond to a person.
Are you overwhelmed by email? Are you sending too many that aren’t receiving responses? Or at least the response you expect?
Within the school, I find that I am putting up signs and sometimes printing slips for people to pick up Email isn’t the only answer and for some people and some information, it isn’t the best answer.
Next up: How I handle many different emails accounts.
Adler, G. (2009). Ten steps to purposeful communication. Return on Behavior Magazine. Retrieved from http://returnonbehavior.com/2009/09/ten-steps-to-purposeful-communication/