Emoticons – Thumbs up or Thumbs Down for Business Collaboration Strategy?

April 12th, 2017

Business Collaboration Stratey with Emoticons?

The digital transformation has taken over many aspects of interpersonal communication, but do emoticons (you know, those adorable M&M-like smiley faces that people coquettishly insert into Facebook posts) have a place in business collaboration strategy? Read this blog to hear one of NYC’s expert telecom providers give their opinion.


The main objection to emoticons in the businessworld is that they’re too cutesy and frivolous for a serious work environment. It’s distracting and deters from the professional image of a business. Many people say the same thing about text messaging. This argument rings especially true in certain situations where they is a power and/or gender difference (example: female employee emailing male supervisor, male employee texting to female supervisor.) Emoticons may convey the wrong message and leave too much open to interpretation. You may find yourself in the red zone with the click of a button.


Some may say that in the fast-paced business world, conveying a message with an image rather than words can save time and speed efficiency of communication. There may just be some interpersonal situations where a touch of humor or liveliness can do wonders. For example, it can be very hard to interpret the tone or personality of an email. Emoticons can soften the tone of a harsh message and lighten the mood; providing clarity as to the attitude of the sender is a win-win for both parties. The emotional quotient can sometimes be missing from digital communication, making business collaboration strategy a challenge.

The Middle Ground on Collaboration: Our View

While we see the merits of emoticons, we think that for a business to uphold its professional image they should be used sparingly and with discretion. They can be used, for example, in a company’s marketing regime either to spice up a dull Facebook post or to liven up a cold sales prospecting email. The preferences of the recipient should always be taken into account. Done tastefully, though, emoticons can provide that splash of paprika that turns a dull appetizer into a full course meal and keep them coming back for more!

At Cortel Business Solutions, we are the business communication experts who are eager to serve you in your journey for seamless office collaboration. Email contact@cortel.com to speak with a consultant who will help you custom build a business collaboration strategy to fit your unique needs – whether it includes emoticons or not!