When Small Business Owners Should Put Down the Tech and Communicate Old School
The art of communications is exactly that; an art form, and one that deserves to be practiced in multiple mediums as opposed to ignored and addressed only when it is convenient. Being attentive to incoming communications, as well as proactive in order to keep key relationships strong is something that every business owner needs to be able to handle, but what about those times when you want to go a little bit further? Old school communication, meaning a face to face meeting, a physical letter, or an actual phone call, are a lot less glamorous than the slew of digitally based communication technologies that are now available to small business owners, but in a pinch they can show that you are really invested in the health of a relationship that means a lot to your business.
A physical thank you note sends a strong positive message. Even more so if it written by hand. The reason is because it is a gesture that implicitly communicates that you took the time to prepare it yourself. An email cannot convey the same intrinsic sense of value that a hand written note can because there is no way that your correspondent can know for sure if they have simply received a modified template email.
A phone call can get issues resolved much faster than texting. While sending a text might take less time than a phone call, the nature of the communication is less direct and more open to misunderstanding than a firm vocal directive. Taking the time to get on a phone call can eliminate some of the wasted time that could otherwise occur texting or long string of emails back and forth between yourself and a business partner or remote employee.
Meeting face to face is the ultimate for communicating ideas. While organizational technologies today have come a long way towards simulating the immediacy of a face to face meeting, they cannot yet fully replace the effectiveness of being in a room with another person and speaking directly to them. Non-verbal cues such as facial expressions can add a lot of weight to a sentence that would go unperceived on a phone call, and a video conference lacks the sense of presence conveyed by a physical person. While it may not be productive to go in to the office for a meeting whenever you have something to say, those times that what you are trying to communicate is vitally important, calling the team together is a wise move.
Photo Credit to liz west on Flickr