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Talk

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Can we talk? Well, that depends.

In today’s world, “talking” means texting. If I can condense my thoughts into 160 characters and don’t mind using my thumbs to communicate, then we can talk. I won’t even think about calling you, because you never answer your phone or check your voice mail. You rarely use email but you change your Facebook status every time you eat out, get sick or update your blog.

If you’re under 50, “talking” can mean email or a phone call. If I can perfectly illiterate every thought and make it past your spam filter, then we can talk. You’ll reply to text messages but you can’t send them, and you’d much rather have an email messages you can keep in your Inbox for a few months.

If you’re under 70, “talking” means just that: face-to-face conversation. If I can’t take the time to pick up the phone or
talk with you in person, you don’t want anything to do with me. It’s a matter of respect, courtesy and clarity. Business lunches are best.

How can you make sure you’re communicating with Ms. Jones, your staff – and even your family – in the most effective ways?

  • Ask. Make it part of your selling conversation. “Do you prefer phone calls, email or text messages?”
  • Duplicate.  Do it all, and keep all your bases covered.
  • Experiment. Keep track of the methods you use to contact each customer, and if/when you receive a response.

Throw in a few personality issues, like introversion and extroversion, and you’ve got a tangled mess of communication options. Talk them out, it’s worth the effort.

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