Archive for June 2013

The_Journey_Cuthbert_of_Lindisfarne

I’m struggling to resolve the following observations:

Many, if not all of the folks I work with say they are “busy”. That’s not unusual, like the hard drive that always fills up regardless of its size, so the work day fills up with “stuff” regardless of how many hours we put into it.  When breaking down the components of “busy” it seems that working on getting the in-box down – or clear – is the main drain on time and energy. Emails arrive at a faster rate that they appear to be dealt with.

However, statistics appear to be showing that there is a decline in overall email use. This is more marked the younger you are. In fact the only age group where email use is growing is the 55+ age group. This is explained by many connecting and communicating via text, social media and phone messenger services. For those under 35 there is a drop (year-on-year) of around 40% in email usage: now that’s a lot! My take on this is that younger folks are not using email to communicate outside of work – older folks are carrying on as normal and still keep sending lots of information to lots of people (often ‘just in case’ or ‘FYI’ so they can “CYA”).

Direct mail shots are dying away… email shots (unless highly targeted and relevant) are treated with the CTL+D key. Social Networks have the advantage that you can communicate in an open space (so everyone sees the conversation – great for customer service) or in private (for those 1-2-1 messages) – this seems to me a much better way to communicate within and outside of the office. Some have responded to this with a company Facebook page. Great if you are in a B2C market, but many organisations IT departments block access to Facebook during office hours. So for the B2B market – what do you do? Linkedin?

So, how long before company websites are more like a social networking site; shared by the staff and customers? This open, honest and transparent way of doing business is the future, I think. Website content will be less the company saying how great it is and what it does for the customer – but more about the customer telling the company what it thinks about them (positive and negative) and what it needs to do to grow. That’s the kind of organisation I’d like to do business with – how about you?

Scary or liberating?