Emojis Require Caution in the Global Workplace
Emojis were specifically invented to ease communication and to say more with less characters. While those small icons will convey a larger message, they also can cause miscommunication. We need to realize that emojis can be interpreted differently by people of varied backgrounds, experiences, generations, regions, countries, etc. For example, the “thumb up” emoji sends different messages for those in the United States as compared to those in the Middle East. The next time any of us are tempted to use an emoji, hopefully a mental pop-up will come to remind us to use caution. Best practice: be aware that there is more than one way to interpret an emoji and it is often different than yours; when in doubt, it is better to use words to express and clarify your message, particularly in the global workplace.