Convenient Communication, Lost Effectiveness

By Scot Herrick | Cube Rules Commentary

Nov 14

There have been some astounding advancements in communications technology in my career. The technology is such that we now expect that we will have Internet availability and cell phone coverage no matter where we go. Whether it be wireless Internet availability on our cell phones at Starbucks or the library Ethernet access, we’ve found convenience in our communication.

But, effectiveness of our communication is a different matter.

  • E-mail — now requires tools and methodology to manage
  • Blogs — thanks for reading, but another communications vehicle
  • Social Networks — with pictures
  • Cell phones — the ubiquitous useful and obnoxious public communications tool (I so love hearing about your last night on my bus commute in the morning…)
  • Instant Messaging — the ubiquitous useful and obnoxious PC communications tool
  • Twitter — makes me twitter just thinking about posting my every waking moment online

While pundits declare that we’re living in an information overload, we’ve also got to admit that much of what we control in our communication is simply used for convenience — not effectiveness.

My wife and I went out to dinner at a very nice restaurant the other week. During dinner, we were across from this nice family of three having dinner. It was an enlightening experience. While waiting for their dinners to arrive after ordering, we watched Dad on the Blackberry, Mom on one too, with daughter working the iPod. They rarely talked, much less looked at each other.

Yeah, the tools were convenient for communicating. We just lose the effective family time and teach our children that engaging in digital communications is just as important as talking to their parents.

While communicating the moments of your life and career, ask yourself if what you are doing is merely convenient, or if it is effective.

Your communications skills will improve using the right answer to that question.