Tech Question

E-Mail vs. Face-to-Face: What Are Your Rules?

This week, Bryan Cave chairman Don Lents told the New York Times that e-mail has its place, but sometimes, face-to-face communication with clients and colleagues is necessary.

“I tell our younger lawyers, if you think you are going to have a difficult interaction with a colleague or a client, if you can do it face-to-face, that’s better because you can read the body language and other social signals,” Lents said.

So tell us: When do you know that an e-mail or a text message is not appropriate for a professional exchange? Do you follow Lents’ guideline, making a meeting if you have the urge to use an emoticon in your e-mail? Or do you seek face-to-face contact after a certain number of e-mail back-and-forths?

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