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Editor’s Note: RISMedia would like to welcome Jared James, CEO and Founder of Jared James Enterprises, an internationally sought-after speaker and trainer, to our online community. Jared will be contributing his extensive experience in helping some of the largest real estate companies around the world remain relevant and increase their incomes in the form of a weekly column in our online news and participation on our social media sites. Learn more about Jared at the end of this article. We look forward to Jared James sharing his invaluable insight with our readers! 

I was thinking about our culture recently in this time of voicemails, emails and social media, and it appears that everyone has a greater desire to communicate, but a lesser desire to actually have a conversation. Believe it or not these are two completely different things. The definition of the word communicate is the activity of conveying information, while the definition of the word conversation is the spoken exchange of thoughts, opinions and feelings; to talk. The key difference between the two is the word “exchange,” which occurs during communication. Communication is a one-way street while conversation runs both ways.

We have gotten to a point where we love to communicate through emails, text messages and social media as long as we don’t have to actually hold a conversation with someone because that may actually require us to invest a little bit of our time in the present and not in the future at a time that we deem possible to respond.

This infatuation with communication over conversation has reached such levels that even on our cell phones—a device solely created with conversation on-the-go in mind—that we actually have an app called “slydial®” that allows us to connect directly to people’s voicemails because God forbid they pick up the phone and respond to what we have to say. That would be way too inconvenient.

Now let me say that if there were a line for the guilty in this battle of communication vs. conversation I would be at the front of it. Shoot, I would be the spokesperson. But I also understand that almost every good thing can be a double-edged sword.

If you are beautiful you have to watch out that you don’t allow vanity to creep in. If you are in love, you have to be careful that it doesn’t blind you to the obvious. And in this world of the digital age where everything is supposed to be quicker and allow for more connection and engagement than ever before, you have to be careful not to allow it to turn you into a great communicator that completely avoids conversation.

Because in the end the more things change, the more they stay the same. People work with people they like and feel comfortable with—posting on somebody’s facebook wall, shooting them a tweet or blasting out an email doesn’t create connection; it only conveys information.

Conversation is the single greatest way to engage and connect with your audience and with your family and friends. Use today’s tools for what they are worth but don’t allow them to rob you of your greatest asset in this world: that is yourself. I look forward to your responses and I will try to respond as soon as I have some time to communicate back to you.

About Jared James
Jared James built one of the fastest-growing real estate teams in the country, was inducted into the International Hall of Fame for one of the world’s largest real estate companies, and wrote a best-selling book—all before the age of 28. As an acclaimed speaker, James keynotes events for major real estate organizations and conducts regular webinars and training for nationally known organizations like NAR, CRS, Yahoo Real Estate,Trulia and Zillow Academy. 

To stay in touch with Jared James, visit and or visit his website at