When Do Telephone Calls Work Better than Emails?
By Andrea Teixeria | @ateixeia05
While emails have become the default tool of communication in offices, sometimes picking up a phone is the best thing you can do. Far too often we have resorted to emailing without sparing a few minutes to judge if a one-on-one conversation or perhaps a meeting, can be the better solution for the intended communication. Some may even go as far as to say that emails should only be used when an in-person conversation is unnecessary or impossible. However, emails are an essential part of our lives, and we cannot do without them. What we can do is opt for telephone calls when the situation at hand 'calls' for them. Here is a look at instances where picking up the phone makes more sense.
1. When there is a possibility that the email's tone could be misinterpreted
More than once, you may have received or written emails that were understood differently and taken in a spirit that wasn’t intended. The drawback of emails is that they cannot communicate the tone of the message, and can end up being misinterpreted. So, if you feel that the spirit behind or tone of the message you type can play spoilsport, use the phone to express your thoughts convincingly.
2. Phones work best when it comes to getting things done
Studies have revealed that phone support works consistently better than emails as a customer service option, when it come to getting things done. As a more passive form of communication, an email may not quite have the same impact as a phone call, where the power of intonations, modulations and plain vocal persuasion can yield the intended results! You can get your message across and have it resolved quickly and with fewer hassles, by punching numbers on your phone.
3. For urgent communications, there is no substitute to phone calls
If you have received a message requesting that you call back, you may have instead emailed saying 'What's up?' on more than one occasion. This can be both rude and frustrating. The overuse of emails is to blame for it. When you are asked to call back, do it. And when that someone hasn’t called you back, remind him/her gently.
For communication that is personal or of a sensitive nature, the next best thing to a face-to-face conversation is undoubtedly the telephone. The bottom line is, avoid being overly-dependent on emails and use discretion when using either form of communication.