(Warning – pseudo “rant” coming – if you are easily offended or this takes you out of your “safe space”, then stop reading now, block me, and forget that I ever existed)
OK folks, I could write many, many pages on this one and cite many, many examples of this issue, but I’ll save you the time and try to keep this one short, but sweet. Here is the bottom line:
Communication is intended to be a two-way street regardless of the method. Let me translate for you in case that wasn’t clear enough: “Just because the method of communication is electronic (any form), that does not make it “OK” to ignore or not respond to someone in a reasonable amount of time.”
OK – WTF am I talking about. This one is really simple actually, at least in my simple brain. And I do NOT believe these are just my rules or my humble opinion – I believe that I am speaking for many, many people out there. So deal with it. In order of expected response time, here are the most common methods of communication used today:
- Face-to-Face or Phone (like anyone uses a phone anymore) – Immediate response expected, or you are either a jerk or should be throat-punched
- Instant Message (many tools used for this) – Not necessarily immediate, but response time should be measured in minutes, not hours
- Texting – becoming more and more common (unfortunately) in business – response should be “relationship and discussion appropriate”. Meaning, depending on who you are talking to and what the discussion is about, respond accordingly. I could spend pages on this one, but if texting is used appropriately, this should be easy. How about this, pretend you are chatting on the phone with the person – how and when would you respond?
- Email – yes kiddies, this one is still used, a LOT. Your college or employer isn’t likely to be texting or “snapping” you – so dust off that email account and suck it up. That “shot” aside, I think that in general, a 24-48 hour response time is reasonable. Of course, there are exceptions to this, but for most people you are emailing to/from, don’t be a jerk and ignore them for a week, or randomly respond to some and not others – be consistent AND responsive.
Yes, there are many other ways to communicate – this is not an exhaustive list. Just the big ones. And NO, I am not perfect in all of these rules, though I try to be when possible.
THIS IS A REQUEST FOR COMMON COURTESY!
I am not requesting any special treatment for me – or anyone for that matter. Just common courtesy. Be polite. Don’t be a jerk. Do not ignore people or “pretend” that you didn’t see something. We aren’t stupid – we know that you are ignoring us and it’s not cool. You are not fooling anyone. 🙂
My last suggestion, treat electronic communication like you would a voice conversation. So respond like you would a voice conversation. Simple stuff – common courtesy.
I’m going to turn this “rant” off for now – I think you get it. And if you are offended, then you are likely part of the problem, not the solution.
Signing off for now…