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In the office setting, it is essential for management to engage communication channels and platforms for efficient and seamless interaction among personnel. In the setting of a paraprofessional within a law firm, interactions with clients may be based either on face-to-face interactions or electronic based communication (ideally emails) depending on the significance of communication (Kim & de Dear, 2013). Since electronic communication has changed the ways individuals in a formal setting can interact, both channels are deemed acceptable within the setting, but advantages and limitations of each approach affect the choice. In this discussion, an analysis of each of these aspects surrounding each approach to communication intends to offer an appreciation of the most appropriate means of each setting.
In a legal setting, either method presents varying impacts on the communication experience, since the level of acceptability of each form of communication depends on what forms are usable as evidence, avoidance of miscommunication, and advising clients. These considerations depend on various scenarios that occur in regular interactions with customers, where the paraprofessional requires observing certain operating protocols relating to the needs of the client and the office. In general, it is possible (and acceptable) to use emails to communicate where the involved persons are familiar with legal terms and universal concepts in the law firm (Uhlig, Farber, & Bair, 1979). In such settings, a face-to-face meeting to communicate details is not necessary, and a summarized version in an email is acceptable. Conversely, the necessity of direct meetings depends on the intensity and discretion. [Click Essay Writer to order your essay]
In the first place, the engagements of clients on a face to face basis is essential where meetings are made necessary by the level of need for interaction, intensity of the messages, and the level of privacy requested by clients. These sessions eliminate the possibility of evidence of interaction since they leave a minimal trace of communication substantiation. Additionally, these meetings are best suited where the client requires intense interaction with a large volume of information to be exchanged. Such clients cannot interact with information sent over on electronic forums since it has to be compressed and summarized for readability (Uhlig et al., 1979). Therefore, it is necessary that the paraprofessional appreciate the level of interaction necessitated by each situation and client.
In reality, the specificity of a message is best discussed within a physical meeting, where one can brief their clients thoroughly without limitation of the interaction by electronic means. Such exchanges not only increase the confidence towards the office where the client interacts with the processes, but it also eliminates the possibility of misunderstanding during the communication. These meetings make it possible to convey opinions, expressions, and interactions, particularly when the client is seen to appeal more towards social interactions. Business communication in the legal setting appeals more to clients on a social sense, where the employees can interact personally and illustrate personal service (Kim & de Dear, 2013). Since the physical interaction during communication can achieve this, it is better suited towards a particular category of clients operating on a personal level. Such contact ensures courtesy and civility in exchanging information. [Need an essay writing service? Find help here.]
Similarly, these meetings can also be limited by their capacity due to the restrictions of efficiency, particularly as it consumes time, requires physical meetings, and increases the cost of the legal process. The considerations on the constraints of physical contact in the modern sense can be reflected from the setting an office possesses. The resources input into meetings with clients are considerably significant on the part of the client and the firm, and can be minimized through alternative means of communication.
Electronic communication in the official capacity commonly involves emails, over the air data transfers, and cloud sharing of legal files (of large size). Its preference depends on the sheer level of efficiency that can be achieved by remote communication. Inasmuch as some people may prefer the personal touch, situations where large information packets are to be exchanged, requires emails (Uhlig et al., 1979). These volumes also limit the liabilities that an office is exposed to since they can be presented as evidence in courts within class action suits involving such communication means. Similarly, dealing with clients is made easier where partially fulfilled information can be transferred to them for consideration. Such data includes legal drafts under preparation and partial evidence for their response (Uhlig et al., 1979). As such, such exchanges are also useful within the office setting since the legal personnel in the office can communicate without having to move around, and in this way, eases teamwork.
Alternatively, it is possible to consider the hazards presented by electronic communication, which depends on the aspects of breaching, transference, and the presence of records of most forms of such communications. Dealing with clients on such platforms may present threats to their privacy since information breaches on email and cloud servers are possible in the modern state of cyber insecurity (Uhlig et al., 1979). Such threats are towards the operations of the law firm, which involve the security of the data on the company’s servers and potential interactions between legal personnel. Also, it is possible for clients to use any legal advice offered and forward it to other possible customers, thus shortchanging the firm of business. Additionally, electronic communication presents limitations to the level of interactivity that can be achieved with clients where communications are meant to be diverse and intense (Kim & de Dear, 2013). Since one-on-one correspondence on legal matters cannot be obtained in email transfers, physical meetings are better positioned in handling such issues. [“Write my essay for me?” Get help here.]
It is possible to consider the level of communication intended by the client (or demanded by the size and intensity of information) to weigh the approach to communication. The recognition here is that electronic communication is limited in quality based on the interpretation of the recipient. The communication process and channel should be functional and without misunderstandings, depending on the type of information exchanged. A suitable case for consideration of the failure of electronic communication is the case of Motorola Inc. v. Interdigital Technology Corp., where a legal professional mistakenly shared client information with a non-client on the assumption that they were part of the representation of Motorola Inc. The issues that emerged were due to the level of vagueness involved in communicating via email, whereby information transfer was involved (Motorola Inc. v. Interdigital Technology Corp, 1997). In this setting, had the meetings been physical, information transfer on behalf of either company would have been transparent with any issues being identified and sorted out instantly. However, the electronic communication did not involve any meetings and resulted in mistakes due to ambiguous messaging.
In conclusion, it is necessary for a paraprofessional operating within the capacity of the firm to establish a balance between these two forms of communication. Such balance is intended to create efficient communication at the lowest costs to all parties applicable to most situations as deemed ideal by the firm. In such typical settings, an employee of a law firm not only identifies situations correctly, but they also establish the perfect approach to engage. In some contexts, it might be best to use a dynamic combination of various communication platforms to achieve the full delivery of information at low risks of exposing such data to external parties. In the overall understanding of the subject, the participants of a communication process have to ensure that it fits their professional capacity and does not interrupt or limit the transmission of information across the platform.
Kim, J., & de Dear, R. (2013). Workspace satisfaction: The privacy-communication trade-off in open-plan offices. Journal of Environmental Psychology, 36, 18-26.
Motorola Inc. v. Interdigital Technology Corp., 930 F. Supp. 952 (D.D.E. 1997)
Uhlig, R., Farber, D., & Bair, J. (1979). The office of the future: Communication and computers(Vol. 1). Amsterdam: North-Holland Publishing Company.