Swapping E-mail Addresses
When people who have been more successful in business than me offer advice, I tend to listen. So when not one, but two, associates suggested late last year that it was time to scrap my antiquated-looking e-mail address, I thought, Better pay attention.
Changing e-mail addresses is no big deal to lots of folks. Over the years, I’ve known some who seem to change theirs with the same frequency I do my underwear.
Not so for me. When we moved more than 10 years ago, I came to realize that an intact e-mail address was of greater importance than keeping the same phone number. Since many people with whom I do business conduct it electronically, many didn’t even realize we had moved.
Importance of Consistency
It wasn’t just the need for consistency in correspondence. My work has shifted in the past several years because of the upheaval in magazines and other print media. Yet, at one time as a correspondent for various national publications, there were numerous folks who had obtained my e-mail address via a publisher—and I didn’t even know it. The thought of becoming unreachable to numerous potential contacts made me break out in a cold sweat.
However, my second friend sealed the verdict when he said, “Your e-mail address makes you look like a dinosaur.”
“Well,” I replied, “I am a dinosaur.”
“Maybe so, but no need to advertise it.”
Still, the thought of making an overnight leap was too much to process. So, in January I started a slow, steady migration process. I gradually informing editors and others I worked with regularly, asking them to e-mail me at the new address.
Shedding Old Habits
Come May, I was still getting occasional messages from contacts who I had forgotten to notify. That made me glad that I hadn’t suddenly dropped my old address and left others trying to find my new one via my web site (which someone said would be a simple process. Maybe so, but I’ve learned that “simple” and “reality” don’t always line up in cyberspace).
However, as June dragged on and I went days without getting any e-mails at my old address—save from a few that I won’t mind disappearing—I decided it was time to cut the cord, so to speak.
By then, I was fairly enthralled with the much more up-to-date, user-friendly characteristics of gmail. Not to mention that it’s free and the old one carried a monthly charge, which a few years ago had increased.
Still, it’s been more than 22 years since I took out the old one. Given my fascination with familiarity, which is a rare quality in the ever-changing world of technology, it was tough saying, “Good-bye.”
Now that I have, though, I can say that sometimes it is worth shedding old habits.