Personal touch: One-on-one chats beat e-mail for getting work done

|     Tobias Hanraths     |

BERLIN (dpa) – Although e-mail is a quick-and-easy way to take care of business with work colleagues, most still prefer a one-on-one chat, according to a study by consultancy company EY. About 800 employees and managers at German companies took part in the survey.

Only 16 per cent of employees said they used e-mail to make fast organisational decisions instead of a conversation. Most employees used the phone (40 per cent) or just dropped by (40 per cent) even if the other person was in another room or floor of the office building.

The older the employee, the less likely they were to use e-mail, but even employees under 30 were more likely to use a phone.

Just under 19 per cent said they used e-mail to organise their work.

However, those figures change when the matter at hand cannot be dealt with in a short conversation.

Nearly a third of people younger than 30 could imagine asking for a raise by e-mail. For the over 40-crowd, the figure was 10 per cent.

One explanation for the preference for personal contact is that e-mail and chat programmes can be distracting. Forty-two per cent of respondents said an e-mail broke concentration, while about 35 per cent said they checked for new e-mails once an hour.

Although email is a quick-and-easy way to take care of business with work colleagues, most still prefer a one-on-one chat, according to a study by consultancy company EY. – DPA