Caution: Don’t Fall Prey to the Millennial Stereotype
In today’s society it’s easy to hide behind your email signature or a text message.
If it’s one thing I’ve learned in the past 7 months, communication is key. Before I entered the real world, I thought I mastered all of the necessary skills to succeed and believed I was very well prepared. I did countless part-time jobs and internships in my desired career field and even volunteered my time to do things that would help me land a job before graduation.
And I did. If it’s one thing I have learned, it’s not just communicating in the work place, it’s how you communicate. With highly advanced technology in the workplace, it is easy to hide behind a computer for all of your workplace communication – but that’s exactly the problem.
An article by Forbes really says it best:
One of the biggest stereotypes about is that they only want to communicate through technology,” says Lindsey Pollak, the author of Getting From College To Career: the Revised Edition
For me, using technology in the workplace was a breeze but sometimes I just wasn’t getting the response I wanted or the answer I needed efficiently. I really needed to force myself to pick up the phone because I was so used to email or text message as forms of communication. I think many times, it was more the fear of not being able to answer a question or concern at the blink of an eye. When I received questions via email, I was able to think about it or get the answer I needed before responding. Not only was the issue communicating, but it was thinking about the audience or the person I was trying to communicate with.
Think about it this way:
In contrast, Baby Boomers are often described as technophobes, hesitant to adapt to the rapidly advancements in technology both at work and at home. They’re largely reluctant to communicate via IM and text message, particularly at work where they prefer to sit down and discuss issues in person, said Pollak.
Take a look your personal life, how many times a day do you actually pick up the phone to call someone?
In the work place whether you are currently in it or about to enter the real world in a few short months, the best advice I can give you is to learn how to communicate without using a computer. When you communicate think about your audience and the message you are trying to convey to them – this is the most important things I learned to communicate effectively.
So as you enter the work force, stop hiding and pick up the phone, or walk down the hallway!