What is worse than crickets?
You’ve put your hard work and energy into an amazing project at work only to have it ignored. In fact, it might even be totally mediocre project, it doesn’t even have to be amazing or enjoyable at all. What’s important is the crickets… the disappointing sound of silence.
Then, after your sweat and tears have resulted in an outcome that you’re proud of, you send it off to the powers that be and wait with bated breath and anticipation for… for… for… hang on, why are we waiting?
You follow up, and follow up again. You see these people in passing and you mention“Hey how you going [shoot the sh!t/fake pleasantries]. Hey just quickly, what did you think of XYZ I sent you last week” And they’ll say, Oh I’m so busy, I haven’t had a chance to look at it.
And then this keeps going for weeks, even months. Potentially even years if you remain in the same workplace.
So you schedule a meeting with said powers that be to get in front of them. And they accept the meeting but they don’t show. And they don’t even cancel or propose another time. So you’re sitting there wasting your time because your manager is too lazy/rude/disorganised/clueless.
What actually goes through the minds of the people as they ignore your email or your notifications, and just keep plodding along with their internet surfing, inappropriate and offensive conversation, or other perceived priority? Or when they just watch the clock ticking past the hour that you were meant to meet.
As a manager the best thing you can do is respond and acknowledge. One of the attributes of a great leader is being accessible, responsive and visible and delivering great customer service – and your team are your customers. You need to ensure you’re satisfying their needs if you’re a leader.
Some of the highest paid most senior ranking individuals are unable to respond to an email in any capacity. Why is this?
Why don’t people have the decency to reply? They can’t be that busy. It’s baffling.
But I think the most heartbreaking part is when this behaviour breeds. Culturally if there’s a norm of not responding, missing people’s deadlines and just crickets – heartbreaking to see the junior employees brought up to think this is normal.
Pride yourself on being a responsive, active, activator in your organisation.