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  • Writer's pictureElise Quevedo

Business Ghosting Is For The Weak. Period!

Originally coined to describe the sudden cessation of communication in personal relationships, the term "ghosting" has increasingly infiltrated the business world. Ghosting in business, where one party abruptly cuts off all communication without explanation, has become a troubling trend in today's fast-paced world. 

We must question whether we have lost sight of the fundamental principles of professional courtesy and responsibility as a result of this phenomenon. As a result of digital communication and fast-paced business practices, business ghosting has become more prevalent in today's corporate world. It has become easier for individuals to avoid difficult conversations by simply cutting off communication when they send emails, instant messages, or texts. 

The constant pressure to meet deadlines and make quick decisions often leads to putting efficiency ahead of professional courtesy, which contributes to business ghosting.

The Rise of Business Ghosting

The phenomenon of business ghosting appears across different scenarios, ranging from candidates not receiving responses from employers following interviews to firms neglecting to address customer questions. Multiple elements play a role in this increasing pattern:

1. Excessive Use of Digital Chats: The expansion of digital methods of communication has ironically simplified the act of overlooking messages. Amidst the steady stream of emails, notifications, and messages, it's easy to overlook a few. The overwhelming amount of correspondence can tax both individuals and groups, resulting in accidental ignoring.

2. Lack of Personal Connection in Online Conversations: Online interactions don't have the personal feel that comes with being in person. This absence of intimacy can lead people to be more likely to overlook or disregard messages without feeling the same sense of remorse or accountability they might feel during an in-person discussion.

3. Shifting Office Environment Trends: Today's office environment is more and more marked by the rise of working from home and adaptable working hours. Although these developments bring many advantages, they can also lead to feelings of isolation and a drop in responsibility. When coworkers and customers aren't in the same location, the social incentive to reply quickly and appropriately decreases.

4. Deal-making Mindset: There's an increasing inclination to perceive business dealings as purely one-sided. When the perspective is narrowed to focus only on the present gain, there's a diminished motivation to keep in touch after a desired advantage is seen as fulfilled or thought to be out of reach.

The Impact of Business Ghosting

The effects of business ghosting go well beyond just causing trouble. It breaks down confidence, harms reputations, and weakens the base of business connections. Here are a few main effects:

1. Erosion of Trust: Trust is the bedrock of any professional relationship. When communication abruptly ceases, it leaves the other party feeling undervalued and disrespected. This erodes trust, making future collaborations difficult. For trust, is the basics of all foundations.

2. Reputation Harm: When companies ignore or abruptly end relationships with clients or partners, it can cause serious damage to their reputation. Bad reviews and word-of-mouth can discourage new customers and harm future opportunities.

3. Missed Opportunities: Failing to communicate can result in missed opportunities for collaboration, growth, and development. It prevents the resolution of misunderstandings and the discovery of mutually beneficial solutions.

4. Emotional Impact: Being ghosted can be distressing and demoralizing for the individual. People begin to doubt their competence and value, which can have a long-lasting effect on their confidence in their ability to perform.

Have We Lost the Basics of Communication?

Is the fundamentals of communication no longer relevant in light of the business ghosting trend? Successful professional relationships are largely dependent on effective communication. It entails showing accountability, empathy, and respect in addition to exchanging knowledge. The growth of ghosting shows a divergence from these key values.

As I have gotten older, even I have accepted business ghosting is a norm. But should we accept it? In my younger days, I would question this behavior a lot more. As we evolve into the future, this became a normal behavior we just move on from. What values are being lost?

1. Respect and Empathy: Respect for the other person is fundamental to good communication. Ghosting is a sign of a lack of empathy and regard for other people's expectations and feelings. It implies that the basic decency given to partners, clients, and coworkers is subordinated to one's personal convenience.

2. Accountability: Accountability is a component of communication. It necessitates facing problems head-on, even when doing so is painful. Ghosting is an avoidance strategy that sidesteps accountability and steers clear of potentially uncomfortable discussions.

3. Professionalism: Upholding professionalism entails abiding by a number of behavioural norms, such as polite and timely communication. These norms are compromised by ghosting, which implies a deterioration in professional ethics.

Reclaiming Effective Communication

To counteract the trend of business ghosting, a concerted effort is needed to reclaim the basics of communication:

1. Prioritize Responsiveness: Organizations and individuals should prioritize timely responses, even if it's just an acknowledgment of receipt. Setting clear expectations about response times can help manage communication flow.

2. Foster a Culture of Respect: Encourage a culture that values respect and empathy. Training and awareness programs can highlight the importance of these values in maintaining healthy professional relationships.

3. Leverage Technology Wisely: Use digital tools to enhance, not hinder, communication. Automated responses, reminders, and communication management systems can help ensure that messages do not go unanswered.

4. Encourage Transparency: Promote transparency and honesty in all communications. Even if the news is unfavorable, it's better to communicate openly than to leave the other party in the dark.

To sum up, while business ghosting has become a common practice, it doesn't have to remain so. By reaffirming our commitment to the basics of communication, respect, empathy, accountability, and professionalism, we can foster more meaningful and effective professional relationships.

And remember, do not take business ghosting personally. Not everyone has the same communications values. Business ghosting is for the weak. Period!

Keep being amazing, keep believing in you, keep being you.


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