May 2019
Lost Connections-Lost Opportunities

Jeffrey Spear - President, Studio Spear

Jeff Spear

In the digital realm, the opportunity to minimize or dismiss communication is enormous. It seems that, the more connected we become, the less we make time for meaningful human contact.


There's no doubt that, when receiving emails, many are routinely viewed as bothersome, deleted, or placed aside to be dealt with at a later date. For some individuals, the sheer number of these diverted emails accumulates to a point that, based on sheer volume alone, makes the idea of responding to them a Herculean if not altogether impossible task. Sadly, they go unanswered.

The same can be said about text messages. While they are considered by many to be a bit more urgent and in need of an immediate response, they can just as easily be ignored, diverted, or dumped.

While an actual conversation via telephone allows for an undeniably interactive and emotionally rich engagement, for many it is an unwelcome intrusion that could be better handled digitally. The sad state of affairs is that, if a phone call is diverted to voicemail, and these messages are deleted or otherwise delayed, the inevitable result is the same as emails and text messages - a lost opportunity for connection.

Ultimately, the act of deleting emails and ignoring calls is, in effect, your way of communicating an unequivocal "no." What many people fail to recognize is, not only is there a lost connection, there may be lost opportunity of significant size, impact and value.

While I understand we are all inundated with spam emails, robo-calls, and unsolicited cold calls, I believe it is critically important to avoid saying "no" until you are 100% sure about the person at the other end of the line and the offer that's being made. As such, there needs to be a more reliable process to sort out the potentially valuable to the undeniably intrusive.

Spam filters are a good start, although many valuable and relevant emails accidentally get pushed out of the way. Signing up with the National Do Not Call Registry and employing NoMoRobo applications is helpful as well. Regrettably, these are far from being completely effective.

I'm a big fan of face to face meetings whenever possible, allowing for all of the nuance of tone of voice, body language, and immediacy to contribute to the engagement. After all, there may be welcomed surprises when meeting face to face that would never surface in a digital exchange. Of course, there has to be some pre-determined value for this meeting to get scheduled and actually take place.

The questions I keep asking are:
1. Why are there so many individuals who believe every unsolicited communication will be an unwanted intrusion?
2. What happened to courtesy, integrity and ethical behavior in the workplace?
3. Why is it so difficult for so many individuals to allow time for conversation and human interaction?

Some of the underlying answers appear to be rooted in greed. Others may be linked to the way we define quality of life. While I understand we all need to make a living, and this is increasingly more difficult day after day, perhaps the time has come to make a more concerted effort to make our daily engagements, whether at home, with friends, or in the workplace, a bit more welcoming, pleasant and rewarding.


If the time has come to overhaul, update and re-invigorate your brand image, or you'd like to change up your marketing program, please call 904 685 2135 - ask for Jeff Spear. You can also contact Jeff via email:

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