Instant messaging allows those connected by the Internet or an intranet to send real-time, typed messages. At work, instant messaging is the fastest way to receive and convey information. Yet it has its drawbacks. They can come so thick and fast that they’re intrusive. Here are some ways to keep IMs on track:
- Be as cautious with IMing as you are with email. Make sure you know whom you’re talking to.
- Never offer any personal or private information via IM.
- Choose your screen name wisely.
- If you IM and get no response, try again later. They could be busy with something else or away from their computer, so don’t take it personally.
- Respect “Do not disturb” status or “Be right back” messages.
- At work, keep messages on task.
- Keep track of your conversations.
- Don’t IM from a friend’s computer unless you’re both in on the conversation.
- Sign off clearly so that others know you’re exiting the conversation.