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Pick up the telephone, office workers urged

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Office employees may be able to work more effectively by making better use of the telephone, it has been claimed.

Writing for the Independent, broadcaster and editor David Hepworth suggested that too many office workers have become reliant on email as a mode of communication.

And as such, they are often conversing with clients, partners, colleagues and customers less effectively than in the past.

He claimed that all too many workers sit emailing each other “in a language designed to neutralise the power of personality, avoid conflict and above all cover their own backs”.

Mr Hepworth – former editor of Smash Hits magazine – claimed that email is now the most popular form of communication between office workers.

And this means that when communicating with people, it is more difficult to build up a picture of people you are dealing with.

“This year I had a 20-email exchange with a PR over a complex arrangement. Only afterwards did I realise that he was a she,” he stated.

Mr Hepworth claimed that email makes people seem crisp and professional, which at times can be extremely helpful.

However he described its use as “a defensive technique, a dead bat, a conversation-ender” which should not become the default in business.

In his view, employees can form better relationships with others by communicating verbally, as they would have done in years gone by.

And this not only helps them to do their own jobs more effectively, but could reflect well on their employers too.