Friday, January 25, 2013

Email: Professional communication, viagra and unregulated financial products

Now that corporations and even governments generally agreed that Internet Explorer 6 is not 'fit for purpose' and has been holding up progress for years, it's time to tackle the next major IT mistake made by large companies and organisations, which is the use of email as an internal team communication and productivity tool.

One specific and unique aspect of email systems that seems an unusual complement to a productive business is spam.  As the post title highlights, email is basically a curious cross between a communication system and a market place for cheap viagra and unregulated financial products.

However, whilst it was easy to point the finger at 'Internet Explorer 6' (especially when Microsoft admitted that you really shouldn't be using it any more), it is much harder to point the finger at email and demonstrate it is not 'fit for purpose' for internal or virtual team communication. Harder still is to point to an obvious replacement - there are lots about (including Teamstinct), but the real problem is not building effective and credible alternatives, but demonstrating and convincing organisations that email for internal use is "bad" and akin to simply burning money.

PS: Actually, one of the problems of convincing companies that internal email is bad is that being 'busy' is often mistaken as being 'productive'. And it may very well be the busy, non-productive people whose jobs seem to rely most specifically on email. Or in other words, email is so inefficient as an internal communication tool that jobs may simply exist as its own by-product. So in the name of self-preservation, there maybe resistance from within organisations to streamline internal team communication...

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