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Email, direct messages, and Facebook messages are great but at times I think they add stress to our lives instead of solving the eternal problem of effective communication. People today send you an email and think they have done their job in communicating their message effectively. We all know that’s not always reality. Our inbox has become another task we have deal with and many times we miss things or forget about important messages that we read but planned to respond to at a later time.

Don’t get me wrong. I love email. I use email all the time to communicate with our team but I also sense people are frustrated that many times they do not get the response back they need from people they email. I often hear from people on our staff and from leaders across the country that they are frustrated because they have “emailed” someone and not heard anything back with the information they need to move forward with a project. With the volume we all face in our inbox there are simply times we miss things and also the people we connect with miss things.

We need to all institute a rule in our over-connected lives to help solve this issue and here it is…

If you have emailed and you don’t hear back from someone don’t assume they got your message. Use a different method (text, direct message, phone call) and reach out again.

Some people are not good with email. Some people have so much email they swim in it everyday. Some people value a phone call over email. Some people prefer email. Some people respond quickly. Some people respond slowly. Some people are focused on a project and not checking email. Some people just forgot. Some people never reply all. Some people always reply all.

Don’t sit around and get frustrated because you don’t have the information you need. Reach out in a different way and don’t allow email to delay forward progress. It’s a great tool but it’s not the only tool.