In our age of e-communications, we sometimes forget to use the telephone. Often it is more appropriate to make an initial contact with an individual on the phone and follow up with email, or vice versa. Telephone and voicemail, as mentioned in Chapter 4, have the advantage of personal warmth and one-to-one connection. Also, a telephone conversation is a dialogue; the parties to the call can go back and forth quickly, amplifying and explicating in 30 seconds points that might take three or four rounds of email to sort out.
When leaving a voicemail, think about what you want to say first. Make your points quickly and in reasonable order. The person retrieving the message will thank you for your clarity and brevity. And, if you cannot think of exactly what you want to say, send an email. The time it takes you to compose the message will give you an opportunity to develop and organize your thoughts.