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Communications patterns and email manner questions…

Some years ago I spent a lot of time writing down, sharing and evaluating different communications styles. I gave them fun names. I haven’t shared any in a while. One of the anti-patterns I’ve found Recently is the smiling crocodile. This anti-patten presents two sides of the crocodile’s mouth. In one location they say kind and gentle things. In the other location, they only spit negative things. The pattern or reverse of that is the Plover (Egyptian Plover) the bird that picks parasites and other things from the Crocodile. Whee, the crocodile is nice and considerate, the plover is nice and considerate. Whee, the crocodile is mean or nasty only, the plover remains nice.

  • One of the things that I am always interested in is the reality of “email manners.” For example, in the next few days, I have meetings in downtown DC. I won’t be able to reply to emails as quickly as I would like to, normally. But, I am not out of the office for the entire day, more than I am out most of each of the days. What is the time out of office, that you mark via an out of office notification in your email? Is it four hours, eight hours or is it two or more days?
  • How long is an email signature too long? I have a friend that has an eight-line signature. Is that too long? Had to tell when it comes to auto signatures. What information is critical in an email auto signature? Telephone? Title or Job Role?
  • Why is there a reply all button? Do people understand when you hit reply all you are sending that email to everyone on the list?

I spend a lot of time answering emails. Please free to share your thoughts on these concepts in the comments.

Finally today, there are a number of things over the years that have intrigued me. Currently, it is the reality of connections and connecting. In part because that is my job, but in part, because it has long been a passion of mine. I will end today with an interesting thought I had the other day. It has to do with the reality of connection today. If you consider where the problems are today in terms of connection where would they be? Please let me know your thoughts on this in the comments as well!

  • Do you wish the reply all button was removed from email?

    • Yes
    • No


What do you think?


Written by DocAndersen

One fan, One team and a long time dream Go Cubs!!!!!!!!!!!!!


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    • Now that is the way to use Reply all. 🙂 It drives me crazy when team members respond to an email I send saying “who can do this,” with a broadcast “I can’t.” I need to know who can do it, not the 100 people that cannot 🙂

      • I have a feeling that a lot of people don’t realize that even with the best of intentions, answering that they can’t when you specifically asked who could, they are showing strong, singular self-centeredness and self-focused. Perhaps they have not yet realized that not everything in the world is about them. In fact, very little is.

        It is also likely that the other 99 people don’t want to read that email either because they are as self-centered and self-focused.

        In a case like this, if the answer is no, the best response would probably be no response.

    • SPAM mail is a huge problem. I’ve seen reports that show 70% or more of all email is SPAM. A company I used to work with (a couple of years ago) used to get 20 or so million inbound emails a day.
      18 million of those were SPAM.

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