Coca-Cola Eliminates Voicemail--What's Next?

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Sooner or later, all modern technologies get replaced. Some evolve to meet demand, while others drift off into oblivion. Voicemail, for instance, continues to fade fast, for this mode of communication has become increasingly bothersome in today's hyper-connected world.
Customer Strategy

Sooner or later, all modern technologies get replaced. Some evolve to meet demand, while others drift off into oblivion. Voicemail, for instance, continues to fade fast, for this mode of communication has become increasingly bothersome in today's hyper-connected world.Coca-Cola recently expedited voicemail's inevitable demise by offering employees the opportunity to shut off the service entirely. While 6 percent of workers at Coke's Atlanta headquarters chose to maintain their current voicemail account, Amanda Roesster, Coca-Cola spokeswoman, notes that said efforts align with the company's goal to change the tools and methods used to communicate enterprisewide. Ed Steinike, chief information officer, also wrote in an internal memo that such moves will "simplify the way we work and increase productivity."

You see, Coke recognizes that nearly everyone avoids voicemail because retrieval can be quite tedious, as workers are forced to navigate the maze of system prompts time and time again. Most people also realize that those who wish to share truly urgent, pressing information will attempt to contact them via email or text to ensure their message makes it through. In fact, when someone now tries to leave voicemail for any Coke employee that's eliminated the service, said individual will hear the standard outgoing message that prompts callers to try back later or use "an alternative method" to contact that given worker.

We live in an era where communication has both stalled and flourished simultaneously, as society subtly abandons its penchant for the spoken word and progressively expands its love for the written word. We opt for emails and texts because we can write and rewrite our messages before sending thoughts out into the world. We gravitate toward Facebook and Twitter, for we all have the innate desire to tell stories and connect with our fellow humans on an emotional level. Thus, as time marches on, we cannot judge habits based upon what once was, but what has yet to be.

Perhaps the technologies of today will eventually be seen as ancient relics of time gone by. Perhaps these modern gadgets and channels will evolve to become something we never imagined. Regardless, behaviors vary, and with each new year comes the desire to grow and develop. Plenty will change, but much will stay the same, though we never can quite tell what the future will bring...

Which technologies do you believe are here to stay, and which are already yesterday's news? What types of innovations will you be keeping your eye on throughout 2015? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

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