More Lies In E-mail

A pair of recent studies suggest that e-mail is the most deceptive form of communications in the workplace–even more so than more traditional kinds of written communications, like pen-and-paper.

More surprising is that people actually feel justified when lying using e-mail, the studies show.

“There is a growing concern in the workplace over e-mail communications, and it comes down to trust,” says Liuba Belkin, co-author of the studies and an assistant professor of management at Lehigh University. “You’re not afforded the luxury of seeing non-verbal and behavioral cues over e-mail. And in an organizational context, that leaves a lot of room for misinterpretation and, as we saw in our study, intentional deception.”[See article]

This certainly raises a few flags as letters become a “historical tool” for communicating and everything becomes more about technology.  This certainly says a lot for virtual teams and remote management.  You can’t rely just on e-mail.  You need to pick up the phone and talk.  You need to visit face-to-face (F2F).

Does this mean that MDs shouldn’t trust e-mails from patients?

Does this mean that deals shouldn’t be negotiated through e-mails?

One Response to “More Lies In E-mail”

  1. Regardless of the form of communication, someone is either truthful and trustworthy or they’re not.

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