What’s The Better Form of Communication…Phone or Email?

Posted on August 6, 2012

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ImageIn today’s world, there are multiple varieties of communication.  There is the old-fashioned, “face to face” communication, talking on the phone, but not typically a phone at home…more like a mobile phone.  There is text messaging, video conferencing, instant messaging, all types of social media platforms, and emailing.  I’m sure there are others that I’m leaving out, but these seem to be the most popular forms.  I would have to argue though that in the workplace, emailing and talking on the phone seem to be the most popular when handling business.

Phone vs. Emailing

Which is better?  Well personally, I think both have their pros and cons…see if you agree.

Pro’s of the Phone

  • Build more of a relationship because you can hear the tone of the voice on the other end
  • You can discuss things in-depth so that it is easily understood
  • Instant feedback (if they answer the phone!)
  • You can hold conference calls with multiple people

Con’s of the Phone

  • You can be put on the spot if you aren’t prepared to answer a question being asked
  • You have to be 100% attentive
  • It can take more of your time than anticipated
  • May not know if someone else is on another line or not

Pro’s of Emailing

  • You have time to think about your response
  • It takes a lot less time to prepare an email than to speak on the phone
  • You create a paper trail of dialogue and information
  • You can include documents and other information that can be sent all at once

Cons of Emailing

  • May not understand the tone or the direct message being expressed
  • Could send to the message to the wrong person without realizing right away
  • Doesn’t establish a relationship or connection as well – doesn’t humanize the experience
  • You may or may not get a response

The way I look at it, both forms of communication are important, but in different ways.  Evaluate the type of message you are trying to portray and your audience.  If you would like a paper trail and to have the conversation documented, I would recommend emailing.  If you want to make sure your tone is understood, you might want to call.  Most people in the professional world tend to call and follow-up with an email.  This gives the opportunity for the receiver to choose the form they are most comfortable with, which will keep the ties of communication clear.  The bottom line, think before you speak!

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Posted in: Business, Media