If you were challenged to a duel, you’d be invited to choose your weapon.

Fists would fight fists, swords would fight swords, and guns would fight guns. Clearly, a gun would win in a sword fight and a sword would win in a fist fight.

Communication channels are similar.

Being face to face in the same physical space beats video calling. Video calls have more chance of success than phone calls. And phone beats email or text.

Even in a phone call (or webinar), every individual interpretation of what you say will be different, as this activity demonstrates:

What this means to you

For communication to be effective, you have to choose the right channel.

Sometimes, you won’t achieve what you want by sending an email, no matter how nicely it’s written. It might only happen by picking up the phone and making a call, arranging a video conversation, or meeting for coffee (when restrictions allow).

[Our current inability to meet face-to-face in the way we usually would is not just against humanity’s intrinsically social nature, but is undoubtedly leading to communication problems and relationship problems.]

If you find yourself in a misunderstanding with someone, you’ll gain the advantage when you move up from a written exchange to a spoken one or (if possible) to an in-person meeting.

If the written word has the lowest chance of success, that’s where there’s the most need for professional help (hint, hint).

Even with the best written copy, every reader will take something different from it. They will only take the bit on board that is relevant to them.

With that in mind, I hope there is at least one thing in this article that is meaningful to you.

P.S. This is also why on-site learning exchange is easier to achieve than via an online course on Zoom (other platforms are available). A live video course beats a pre-recorded course. And both beat listening to a podcast or reading a book.

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