We all have a sense that our world is getting more pervasively digital. However, I wanted to get a sense of the degree to which that change is happening with regard to our day-to-day communication. As I often do, I turned to my friends and followers on the social networks to get a reading. I did a survey three years ago asking questions on a variety of topics including this one. So, I thought it would be good to ask the key question again and see what change, if any, there has been in the use of electronic communication. I asked the following question on Twitter and Facebook: What percent of your interactions with others during a typical day would you say are via electronic means versus face-to-face? The results were pretty dramatic. In 2009, people responded that 65.7 percent of their interactions were via electronic means and the corresponding number in 2012 was shown to be 77.0 percent. A 11.3 percent increase in three years is quite amazing. Although this isn't a particularly scientific survey, it reinforces a pretty substantial trend toward more and more of our communication and interaction being experienced digitally. I'll follow up further to investigate additional factors underlying this trend, such as work versus personal interactions, the degree to which the communication leverages mobile devices, etc., and will report those results here as well.
I do a podcast series called Life Habits Mentoring, as most of you probably know. I just recorded an episode on the topic of communicating assertively. I've always believed that interpersonal communication is critically important in all aspects of life, whether communicating the features of a design you've just done, discussing a problem with a family member, or expressing your views to a good friend.
I provide advice on how to achieve balance in your communication between being passive and not expressing your your views at all to being too aggressive and expressing your views at the expense of other people. I don't pretend that I'm perfect at this myself but I think the top 10 items I've compiled will make anyone more assertive and, in turn, more effective in life. You can listen to the podcast episode on my Life Habits show notes website or via iTunes.
I've been thinking a lot about the various types of electronic communication that we deal with everyday and have blogged about aspects of it here as well. I've put together my thoughts and advice on everything from Facebook and Twitter to texting, instant messaging, e-mail, conference calling, and video conferencing in a podcast episode in my Life Habits series. I discuss my thoughts on how to effectively use these mechanisms as well as how to limit them as well. You can subscribe to the series via the iTunes store as well as the Zune store. You can also listen to the podcast episode right here on the blog. As usual, I'd very much appreciate any feedback you may have on the podcast episode via a comment on this blog and/or on the relevant pages within the iTunes and Zune stores.