When the Written Word is Not Enough

Tremendous importance is placed on the value of the written word.  Anything lasting must be in writing. Anything to be remembered  must be in writing.  Anything legal, binding or anything important, must be in writing.

So, it can be hard to understand how there can be circumstances when the need for fast, simple, persuasive and ultra clear communication precludes the written word.  Those are the times you just have to speak up or listen, depending on which side of the communications equation you’re inhabiting at the time.

We get lazy and ignore the tremendous advantages that the spoken word can deliver over the written word. But now and then when our laziness and inertia are overridden by an immediate need to make the point with unequivocal (and confirmed) clarity, we finally discover the motivation to abandon our keyboards and pick up the phone.

Too bad we don’t do it more often.  I’m guessing there is something in our basic nature that makes us not only gravitate to the latest and greatest, but also to the smallest amount of work that’s required of us.  The personal visit was replaced by the handwritten note which was replaced by the telephone call, then the email and now the text message. As we abbreviate and depersonalize communication the nuances have disappeared, but nuances are necessary.

This is true for our personal communications and especially for business communications.  Why more so for business?  Well, probably because mistakes in business are rarely made up with a hug and a kiss- at least not since the 70’s.  Mistakes in business communication mean lost clients, missed opportunities and lost sales.  So why do we keep scrimping on our range of communications techniques?

If you have something important to say by all means send an email. However, if you really want to communicate let people hear your voice, complete with its sincerity and excitement, curiosity and unequivocal clarity.

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