Technology is at the same time both fantastic and a real pain. Think about recruitment for a minute. While the profession has been revolutionized in the digital era, it has also created a huge lack of courtesy to candidates relative to the past.
Texting is fast, easy and immediate. It is efficient and effective, and you can’t say that about everything we do. The problem with texting in the new digital era is that while we gain in pace, we often lose in courtesy — and here’s why.
If we can be late for a contact (a meeting or a call) or if we have a disaster with our technology that precludes us from being on time, using text messages is fantastic. With minimal effort we can alert colleagues about the situation we are in — save them from worrying and let them know when we will be with them.
If there is a crucial family issue pending, we can keep our phone on silent waiting for a message from loved ones.
Texting is, though, just another tool in the workplace. Let’s consider other tools and processes that enable us to be effective workers and co-workers. If we want to get into conversations with colleagues, the best way of doing this face-to-face or email. If we plan to hold a meeting, we will either meet face-to-face or virtually (by phone, Skype or whatever).
The pain in the neck issue is concentration — respecting the working space. The world will still revolve even if I am not attending to my text messages every moment of every working day. The challenge we have is that, if we’re watching our text messages, those around us will believe we are not really with them; certainly not 100 percent.
From a baby boomer’s point of view, we would rather not have you with us than have you as a diminished person — half in, half not and certainly not as good as you can be.
The choice should be simple. You may have to reflect a moment to see the impact of the choice that you make!