Simple Rules for…Communicating in the Digital World

1) Leave voice mail. If you’re going to take the time to call, take the extra 10 seconds to say why you were calling. A missed call does not provide any sense of urgency. Could have been that you were in the area to say hi and returning the call is irrelevant. Let the person know so no one wastes their time. You called, it’s your job to leave the message.

2) If it’s important, don’t post, tweet or email. Pick up the damn phone and refer to #1 if there is no answer.

3) Respond in kind. If you get emailed, you can email back. If you get texted, you can text back. If you get called, you can’t email or text back, you must call. People are becoming so lazy now. I’ve had times where I’ve left a message on VM, but the person Facebooked me back. Unacceptable.

4) Twitter is not a 2-way dialog tool. If you want to have a conversation, do it via text or email. The whole world does not want to see you banter back and forth with your friend about your opinion on Obama.

5) Follow-up. If you’ve reached out through anything other than the phone, there is no guaranteed way to know the message was received. Instead of freaking out when you don’t get a response to the email you sent 2 days ago, pick up the phone and see what’s going on. There are too many reasons why someone may not have responded.

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