I don’t like mobile phones, and I only use mine to talk or send text messages to my husband. I don’t even include my phone numbers, whether mobile or landline, on my business cards. Email, on the other hand, is another thing. It is email that I can’t live without.
There are lots of people who don’t share the same sentiments. There are countless business owners who push for giving more personalization to communication by picking up the phone and having a conversation with a client, one-to-one. There are also those who believe that one has to set-up an appointment or a call, then shoot an email right after for documentation purposes.
These people have a point though; and it is true that mobile phones are faster and more efficient than email. Also, spoken language is harder to misinterpret. And I’m sure one time or another we’ve gotten that email that left us asking, “Was he serious?”
Even putting those benefits into consideration, I still despise the phone. I loathe having to reply to numerous text messages or having to answer unexpected calls during times that I need a little bit of personal space. This disdain is even more apparent now as I also have a baby to take care of. I never want to answer a ringing phone when I’m giving my baby a bath, changing her nappies, or lulling her to sleep. A ringing sound during those sensitive times makes me want to go ballistic and just throw the phone right out the window.
My opinion is that the phone works best for the traditional nine-to-five workers. They are always at their desks, always available to callers during office hours. Furthermore, for these traditional workers, it is a given that they should always have access to their mobile during office hours. One question though. Does this system really work for small business owners like yours truly? At least for me, it doesn’t.
As for small business owners like me, I believe that email works best. It gives me more control of when to read and respond to messages. Moreover, I find the email thread really useful as there’s written documentation as to what transpired during an email conversation with a client.
Dealing with only emails also entail a strict discipline. These messages can pile up with neglect; and then you find yourself spending a lot more time than expected replying to countless emails.
I just hope that everyone has been educated on email etiquette. There are messages that you shouldn’t be getting and there’s a actually a trend of over-communication nowadays that even the biggest and most professional of all companies are endorsing. For me, I’ve got better things to do than answering a call or reading emails not addressed to me; and I just want everyone to know that.