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E-Mail and Text: A Greater Source of Conflict Than We Realise
By Mervyn Malamed

Written by Mervyn Malamed | PUBLISHED IN “THE JEWELLERY NEWS”

E-Mail and Text: A Greater Source of Conflict Than We Realise

Conflict can develop even when both sides share a common goal and are not in opposition to each other. The intrinsic subject may indeed not be the cause of a rift. By virtue of its convenience and accessibility, this tool has nudged other forms of communication to the side-line. It’s quick, it’s easy and the repercussions can be disastrous: electronic mail. “Embolism-mail” obstructs the natural flow of discourse between people, stifling communication.

In a neutral situation an e-mail or text is sent and received without incident. Yet, with underlying tension between the parties, it will be exacerbated. Shielded by our screens we operate under a false sense of security. We cannot see or hear our opponent’s wrath, so we are invincible.



That is until receiving a reply. So the destructive exchange is played out from one mail to the next. Whereas with face-to-face interaction, it’s easy to see the problem you are causing.

The word “okay,” expressed over e-mail may be perceived as hostile and curt. In person, the word “okay” could be the icebreaker that is needed for conciliation. A smile, a nod of the head or a change in tone will unblock the communicator arteries quicker than a dozen e-mails.

Optimal goals are attained by face-to-face communicator as first prize, Skype/video conferencing as second, telephone as third, and e-mail or text, last.

Communication stripped of eye contact, body language tone and gestures is prone to miscommunication.

When using e-mail respect one cardinal rule: Do not send a hostile e-mail until the following day – chances are you may not send the e-mail at all then. You may just pick-up your phone and say, “I know we are both on tight schedule but we really should meet and sort this out.”



My daughter emails me. When your daughter starts to email you instead of talk to you… It’s horrible. You cannot forget human communication. Martha Stewart