In this era of digital, it’s all too easy to fire off a text or a quick social media post and call it a day.
We no longer need to keep a calendar since Facebook prompts us to send birthday wishes, and most of us use our phones more for texting and scrolling than for actual conversing.
I love everything we can do online. Shop, bank, work. But sometimes a life event or moment warrants more than a screen encounter.
Sometimes (gulp), we should actually call, send a handwritten note, meet in person.
Yes, it can be scary, inconvenient, and take more than 10 seconds. But, it’s the right thing to do.
And in case you’ve totally lost all human touch, here is a sampling of situations where digital is not enough (in my humble opinion) …
- A baby is born and this little munchkin is a new family member. If you’re the grandma, grandpa, aunt, uncle or super close friend of the new mom or dad, you should call to send your best wishes, or do a drop-in. A new life is huge, and exciting, so take a few moments to celebrate.
- You are the recipient of a generous gift. Maybe someone gave you funds, or a thoughtful gift, or an hour of their time to mentor you. Sure, an email might do. But following up with a card or call is better. It will mean so much to the individual who gave so much to you. Make your gratitude personal.
- Someone close to you is going through a tough time. Maybe they are sick, or super stressed, or lost a loved one. Really, you are going to send a text or post on their Facebook wall? Again, reach out and connect. Give them a hug, hear their voice, and let them hear yours.
- You almost got the job. OK, so this one is for all of the HR people. The candidate makes it through the phone screen, the multiple rounds of interviews, the special “interview project.” They were so close, but the hiring team decided to go a different direction. OK, it happens. But the company representatives should have the common courtesy to call. Sometimes they just drop off the face of the earth and say nothing. Sometimes they send an email. Come on, after you put someone through that process, they deserve more. Suck it up and do the right thing. Close the door in a professional manner.
- Super, amazing, wonderful news. I admit I sometimes send an email, but I do my best to acknowledge milestone moments with something more personal. A coffee date to catch up. A card in the mail. A hug. A smile. Digital doesn’t always convey warmth, so find opportunities to raise your game.
I could go on with specific, crazy examples, but these are my big moments. I pride myself in embracing all things digital. I’m a digital marketer, so I get it. But I’m human, and so are all of the people in our lives. Sometimes, more times, we need to be more human.
Do you have any beefs with digital communication?
Have we gone too far in relying on this medium in our personal interactions?