Then Poof! There it is… GONE!
It’s happened yet again. With another client. We warned the client more than once. You’re gonna’ get burned. And they did.
At the end of the day you cannot make a client do something for their own good.
Here’s the deal. Is this you?
You’ve been running or working in your organization or business for some time now. You’ve always simply used your personal email address because…
- It’s what you’ve always done
- It’s where your to-date, legacy communications reside
- You’re using some clever name that is an outgrowth of your own personal brand identity as opposed to that of the business ie. firstname.lastname@example.org
- It’s simply close enough. Afterall you’re using: email@example.com or other.
Here’s the BIG problem though.
You likely see this coming. It’s surprising to me though that smart people still run along this cliff’s edge.
There is such a thing as turn-over. People don’t stay in their job or position for ever. At some point EVERY… SINGLE… ONE, without exception will move on. They’ll retire, they’ll take another position, they’ll be terminated… people, humans move on. Hopefully the institution or business is intended to continue on as people come and go.
When these individuals do leave the organization or business, more often than not when they go, if they’ve been using their personal email for business, there too goes all those vital communications. For the organization or business left behind there remains the void. Who communicated what, to whom and when? What were those commitments?
Why point out the obvious?
Because it continues to happen. You’d be surprised. Here’s how it typically happens.
The organization or business leader has been running things since before they ever had developed a professional website and associated business email addresses. Adopting the new, professional email address is viewed as too disruptive or unfamiliar. Migrating pertinent legacy communication to the new email channel, groom their existing relationships to move to the new email address and get comfortable themselves; there’s no time or willingness. So, while subordinates and new hires generally migrate they themselves don’t quite make it.
The other scenario is a new administrator comes in with their own, legacy, branded identity that is tied to their email address. They are likewise reluctant to make the transition. Board members or other executives are either unaware of the looming peril or unable to assert the needed change on the “boss”.
The results are the same. Also, it’s not a matter of IF tragedy will occur. It is simply a matter of time. You can warn the client but at the end of the day you cannot make a client do something. You wait for the inevitable phone call or email from the new admin with your bad news prepared.
What your email address says about you
If you’re still using: firstname.lastname@example.org this is really less-than-professional, particularly if you have available to you; email@example.com
If you’re using: @aol.com, @yahoo.com, @earthlink.com, @charter.net etc. now you’re communicating, IMO 🙂 Hey! I’m old and have not kept up with the times! Sorry if this is blunt. Frankly, it’s what comes to my mind when I see this.
If you’re communicating professionally with others you really need to be using your professional email address particularly when the company or organization does not belong to you.
If you’re a board member, executive or administrator and you observe folks using their legacy, personal email addresses for business correspondence, there is trouble in the future for your business or organization.
It can be tough, many of us lapse in this regard, I certainly have. When we identify so tightly with our business or organization the lines between work and personal lives and communications are blurry and border on arbitrary. I’ve been reminded to be more diligent in this regard as I watch this client deal with their turmoil.