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The right media
2010-11-25

As I stood in front of the meeting room, being told that the reunion had been postponed to half an hour later, I was slightly disappointed. As a colleague added "But I've sent you an eMail", I was tempted to talk about the foolishness and inefficiency of such an action. So let's see which medium is best for what topic at work. (Note that the adequate medium for a specific topic might be totally different at home.)

Serie Office 04

Personal contact

Meet the other part in person if the topic
  • is very important
  • will probably generate a longer discussion
  • is top secret
  • involves talking about money
  • involves many people (organize a meeting in this case)

Phone call

Dial the other part's number if the topic
  • is time-critical
  • is an idea or concept that's better explained personally (rather than written)
  • doens't need deep thinking from the other part
  • is a question which can be answered by "yes" or "no"

Direct messaging / Instant messaging

Depends on your organization's guidelines.

eMail

Send an eMail to the other part if the topic
  • is not time-critical
  • can be written and understood shortly
  • is precise, defined
  • is a question which can be answered by "yes" or "no", if the recipient is not available on the phone
  • can be structured into smaller chunks if it's longer

Sticky note

Paste a sticky note if the topic
  • contains no sensitive information
  • is not time-critical
  • is not important


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