The Resurrection of Working With People
As global communication has improved over the last few years, many businesses have moved away from the cost of sending representatives to worldwide meetings to telepresence meetings, video conferencing, and other forms of stationary face-to-face contact. Yet as the process of telepresence continues to grow, business leaders are almost unanimous in their want to have in-person meetings and contact as much as possible. It’s viewed as being more productive, increasing collaboration, and giving people the chance to understand everyone else in a much better way. Is the expense of in-person meetings worth the cost?
More Is Said Non-Verbally Than Verbally
The primary problem with telepresence is that it doesn’t give people the complete picture of what is going on. Humans are visual creatures before auditory creatures. This means that when someone is speaking to us, we are watching how they are talking to us before we are listening to what it is they are actually saying. These non-verbal cues, such as a defensive posture, can give us an indication that what we are hearing isn’t the complete truth. In the same way, open body language can indicate trustworthiness can help lead to quicker collaboration efforts. By using telepresence, these non-verbal communications are much more difficult to relay.
The Three Essential Advantages Of Working In-Person
Even though telepresence can save money, especially for a corporation working on a global scale, there are some things that in-person meetings can provide that are essentially priceless:
• problems are resolved more efficiently.
• long-term relationships are more easily established.
• opportunities can be created more quickly.
From the tone of voice to the body language someone conveys, a video stream simply cannot relay the same information to someone that can be relayed in-person. From crisis management situations to training and coaching, better information is conveyed and retained when it is done face-to-face without technology.
Why Focus On E-Mail Rather Than In-Person Communication
Even though a large majority of business leaders believe in-person communication is the key to a successful business, a majority of business communication doesn’t happen in real time. E-mail is often the preferred communication medium, with texting, instant messaging, or even voicemail often given a preference over an actual phone call or face-to-face meeting. Why is that?
It is because there is a risk involved with in-person communication that is reduced through telepresence communication forms. In-person meetings bring about a greater chance of failure, create a need for a polished presentation, and there must be an immediate first impression made that is positive. The outcome of the in-person meeting will be judged in 30 seconds or less! With telepresence, communication doesn’t always happen in real time, meaning that people can think, adapt, and come up with a tailored response.
If your business is struggling to close deals or morale is low and you primarily rely on telepresence communications, try adding more in-person meetings to your schedule. When your co-workers know each other, it’s easier to work together!