During the last few weeks, I have found myself asking the following question to colleagues and team members when they expressed frustration about not getting a reply to an email: “Have you tried calling?” And, the response was always no.
I find it interesting that we are at a place in our business world in which not responding to each other is so commonplace. However, what is even more fascinating to this communications professional is that our response is to be frustrated, and it doesn’t even occur to most to reach out via phone. When did picking up the phone and talking to our clients and colleagues become such a foreign concept?
Don’t get me wrong…there have been plenty of instances in which I too have been frustrated that I wasn’t getting a response to an email, or the follow-up email, or the email after that. However, I have learned that many folks simply don’t respond if they don’t yet have all the information or they may hesitate to give you an answer if they think it is one you won’t like. By picking up the phone, you benefit from not only getting an answer, or at least a status update, but also have the opportunity to build the relationship. What else are they working on? What are their pain points? Is there something else you can help them with besides the issue you were so focused on?
This week, let’s commit to talking to each other. Pick up the phone. Ask questions. You may find answers to questions you haven’t even asked yet.