End of E-Mail? Not Quite, But Close

Alex S. Brown, PMP IPMA-C

Today I had one of thosef moments where you realize that things have changed. Today I realized that I am more responsive to Twitter and LinkedIn than to e-mail.

Now, I have read about people giving up their e-mail addresses in frustration. I have used to love e-mail, but all the spam and automated messages have become overwhelming. I use all the best tools I can find to auto-sort and prioritize my e-mail. I rarely see spam, because Gmail catches almost all of it.

Even with all these tools, it is hard to keep up with my inbox. I probably should set up a special “secret” e-mail address for high-priority conversations. I have many business associates that have done so, and it can be helpful.

Instead, I am going to admit publicly that e-mail is not a good way to get in touch with me quickly. I hope my friends will understand. Phone has always been the best way to reach me. My phone number is available on the Internet, and I do respond quickly to the phone, so hopefully I will not lose any business because of my e-mail habits.

Maybe I should just remove my e-mail address from my business card and contact information. People who I correspond with regularly usually use the phone, Skype, LinkedIn, or Twitter to get in touch with me. Whatever method they use, I reply there, stop by their desk, or give them a call.

I could make some overarching predictions about the “social media revolution” but that seems silly. After all, these are just different ways to send me an electonic message. In a way, social media is just a minor repackaging of e-mail. On LinkedIn I basically send and receive e-mails, except it is a little harder to reach me there. New people need to send invitation requests, and “connected” people get to the top of my inbox. It is just e-mail with better spam filtering!

What have you found in your life? What is the best way to contact you?

Of course, the fact that I am posting this message to my WordPress web site, which will automatically get posted to Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, and all my other social media pages is a profound improvement in usability over e-mail, where I would have to carefully consider my “to” and “cc” list, but let’s leave that idea for a future article….