Saturday, 12 September 2009

Failure to answer e-mails

is an irritant I must learn to live with. I must learn to live with people who do not reply to e-mails.
I keep telling myself this. I can sometimes make a telephone call, "Yes, sorry Cat I have not got around to it" and "I have not looked at my in-box" and "I have been out of the office at a meeting all morning" (and all yesterday as well?) and "I don't know what to do so I didn't bother to answer" and "my computer is not working" (how did you respond to this then?) ... the list goes on.
I know e-mail capacity is both a blessing and the bane of many people's lives. If I want the attention of a politician or a person of importance (politicians do not rate as VIPs but they want to be treated as such) I will write a letter. I will keep that letter short. It will state the issue. If I have not contacted them before it will state my credentials. That is about it. Nothing more is needed in the letter. There may be a short amount of accompanying information. If they want to know more they will ask. Do not overloard them with information.
E-mails however are a different story. I try to keep my work e-mails short. I try to make contact because it is essential to do so. I need an answer. It is why I am contacting you. I do not want to be fobbed off with excuses. Get around to responding. You expect me to respond when you e-mail me. I down load my e-mail on a regular basis. If I do not know the answer I will say so-and try to suggest an alternative solution or source of information. I will head for the local library and use one of their computers if needs be.
My job is about communicating. It is about responding. The people I supposedly work with are in related fields. They should know about the importance of communicating. Some of them are aware that lives depend on communication lines being in place. They still fail to respond. It is as if, one step removed, it is no longer real to them. It is like television news footage rather than real life.
We all need to talk a little less and listen a little more.


Agnieszkas Shoes said...

Terribly frustrating, isn't it? I always answer my e-mails. I have a terrible feeling I don't always keep them short and to the point like you, though :-)

catdownunder said...

Ah, have you read Nicola Morgan's latest piece - on over-writing? And next up...