The advance of the Internet has made the world a smaller place. We have never been more connected. We’ve never had so many modes of instant communication. A person can be perpetually available by simply keeping a phone within reach.
It wasn’t long ago that staying in touch required a lot of effort—leaving messages, checking pagers, enduring days of phone tag, sending snail mail, finding a fax machine. Now all of that has been compressed into your phone—a little rectangle of metal, glass, and plastic. Phones are a window to the rest of the world that we so casually keep in our pockets and purses.
But there is a glaring paradox in all this connectivity—it often leaves us further removed from the people driving our business.
As with everything in life, there needs to be balance. Social media, texting, and e-mail should never be used in place of personal interaction; they should supplement it. In a world where our daily lives are saturated with digital back and forth, personal interaction has never been more crucial. A phone call and a note might seem antiquated, but these small efforts can make all the difference when it comes to standing out from the masses.
We can fool ourselves into thinking social media, e-mails, and texting are more efficient ways to reach our sphere and manage our time. It’s true that good ol’ face-to-face conversations are time-consuming, but they’re also more rewarding. Dropping in on a client or taking a prospect out for lunch can occupy a large portion of your day, but ask yourself: Do you want to be the kind of agent who’s too busy to spend time with a customer? Do you think that level of unavailability is good for your bottom line?
Social media is about breaking down walls of isolation, yet so many of us fall into the trap of building them higher. If you find yourself retreating behind Snapchat and Facebook, then you need to put down the phone and go have a conversation with someone important to your business.