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Contact Someone - and I don't mean email them!

Posted Jan 19 2009 1:26am
Isn't it interesting how life just seems to fall into what you are thinking about? As I was getting my coffee this morning I was going over in my head a thought about this generation, relationships, and how they communicate vs how my generation communicates. For clarification, what is my generation? I am 53, so I am a baby boomer who was not raised on any type of computer equipment what so ever. The computer age did not come into the workforce until I was in my mid 30's! After I got my coffee and then turned on my computer, the first email I read was something about being a friend and being there for one another. I love these type emails, but I had to wonder if the younger generation really appreciate what these emails are all about?

It is interesting to me how they communicate and I wonder so often will it will effect how people relate etc in the future? My daughter and I were trying to make some plans the other day and she had mentioned doing something with a friend. I suggested she get with her and see what was up. She had not left the room, but a few minutes later she said, "oh, Sandra is ....". I said "WHAT", how do you know that? When did you call her? My daughter said, I didn't, I texted her. Ahhhh, I did not even notice her doing that. What happened to giving a girlfriend a call about getting together and during that same call finding out about a great sale at ..... or the latest update on her life! Is this generation missing out?

One thing I know they are to the point. You don't go on and on in a text. It is question, answer. You can be involved in a conversation with a person, answer a friend's text message, and keep on doing with what you are doing. Is this good? Are we totally engaged with the person we are with if we are constantly answering others and engaging in conversation with others at the same time? The jury is out on this as far as I am concerned.

As I have been considering this topic I have stumbled across articles that discuss good communication skills, finding websites that focus on relationships and social media groups that discuss good communications as a top priority. It is apparent to me, that communication and what denotes good or acceptable communication is under discussion by many others.

As an office manager I have found myself giving new and not always younger employees directions on a topic and many times include the task that they contact a particular individual or group. So many times when they report back to me on their progress and I inquire as to the contacts and the results. To my dismay, they often respond, "I emailed her/him, but he has not emailed me back". So, that is acceptable? To me that is a cop out. I so often go on to explain that in knowing your audience that an email will not always get you results. This generation expects instant reply, instant gratification, etc. What happened to realizing that others are busy and can't stop everything just for us? Some things take more than a one or two word reply, and you can get so much more and learn more in, don't be surprised now, in a one on one conversation!!! After some discussion on what I expect and why I want them to do some contacts in person, believe it or not, I have had employees go right back out and send another email! Hello! Let's go over this one more time! I guess I needed to explain it all in an email!
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