Years ago when I first start freelancing, I noticed in the first few weeks I hardly ever made work related phone calls.
I do remember there was one very long and frustrating call trying to clear up a problem with my computer but I don’t think that counts. Come to think of it, in the end I couldn’t get anyone to help me over the phone, so I sent an email.
There were however a lot of emails sent and received in those first few weeks.
I definitely prefer to work via email instead of over the phone.
One of my best friends is addicted to her mobile phone (which let’s face it many people are).
Working in finance she spends her day talking to customers on her office phone, whilst receiving dozens of messages from customers on her mobile that she needs to respond to. Since she needs to be available to customers, it’s not uncommon to meet her for a drink after work and have her take business calls (I always make sure I have a book handy when I meet her now, just in case).
Of course it’s not just talking that people are using their mobiles for. Texting has become a normal and (let’s be honest sometimes intrusive) part of our work lives.
I’m personally not a big fan of texting for work because I have seen messages get misconstrued. Messages are usually so short and sharp (and let’s not even talk about texting errors!) that their true meaning can be completely lost. They are great for quick responses like yes, no, on my way or I will be there in 5 but for anything complicated it’s probably better put in an email.
I am totally addicted to email. If I can’t receive emails, there’s panic in the air (it’s full on chaos if the internet stops working).
If I want to contact one of my friends I generally email them. It’s the same with business contacts. My main contacts actually prefer it this way as they rely heavily on email as well.
A lot of people like email because there is a written record (it’s for the very same reason that some people don’t like it as well).
Which method you prefer can simply be a matter of habit. Working years ago as a PA in a busy sales environment in Sydney, saw me answering over 100 phone calls from customers per day. That number dropped significantly once I changed jobs and moved out of sales and into a property banking environment. The phone barely rang in the next company I worked for.
Many people prefer phoning someone and getting the information they require straight away.
Regardless of whether you prefer email, speaking on a landline or talking on mobile it’s the quality of communication and achieving your desired result that’s important.
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