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September 09, 2009

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Patrick S. O'Donnell

1. I NEVER answer the phone unless I'm expecting a call at a particular time: my friends all know this so they leave a message and understand that if I'm not involved in something I'll pick up during the message or return their call when convenient.

2. I compose e-mails whenever I take a break from work.

3. I only attend condo. assoc. meetings and we always have an agenda.

4. I only let people ramble if I suspect they're in a fragile or vulnerable psychological state such that the rambling is cathartic or helpful to them.

5. I check e-mail if I'm at the computer reading blogs and the like. If I'm composing a document or reading an article or articles online I ignore e-mail.

6. N/A

7. ?

8. I don't own a cellphone or a Blackberry.

9. Easier said than done, but I'm working on it.

Kathy Stanchi

This is a genuine question: how do you stop people from rambling without being rude? This is why I love email -- if someone rambles on email, I can just read it later, or not at all. But rambling is tough for me, especially if the person (read: colleague or student) is in MY office. Somehow whenever I say I have to go, or give some excuse, people look miffed or hurt. Or they ignore me until I repeat it. Maybe it's my delivery?

I thank all the powers that be that there was no such thing as a Blackberry when I was engaged in the full time practice of law.

Jeff Yates

Kathy - Ferris elaborates on this point and gives practical advice in his post, so you might want to check that out - there's even more in his book on this - btw I am not paid by him in any way :-) I do think that Patrick has a good point on this, um, point - there's a time and a place when you should let people babble; it's fairly rare, but sometimes it happens.

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