Both efficiency and preserving resources are at the forefront of anyone’s mind, particularly when business is involved.
With the ever-growing rate of technology it’s a lot easier to drop an email rather than have a face-to-face (F2F) meeting. We’ll also go with a conference telephone/video call rather than have a real-life meeting at a conference table.
But how much do we really lose with virtual screens and a lack of F2F interaction? We’ve picked out the top 4 reasons for maintaining F2F relationships for business, whether that is with clients, partners or just for networking.
#1 Less chance for miscommunication
You’re not getting the whole picture with virtual communication. Even though this isn’t a conscious decision, you’re often forced to make inferences. As a result, contextual information is missed out and miscommunication occurs. These may be cultural diversity issues or perhaps just general differences in attitudes, expectations or reactions. In real interaction you are more able to make correct judgements and adjust your own behaviour accordingly.
#2 More likely to maintain business relationship
Jiang and researchers found that face to face communication resulted in neural synchronisation of the subjects. Mirrored brain activity may explain why we tend to mimic general expressions and body language. Now that’s an amazing connection and that’s something quite difficult to achieve over a phone call or through a computer screen.
Not only is our brain activity influenced but so too are our emotions. It’s a lot easier to build trust due to increased and closer interaction. With regards to projects, F2F interaction allows for team-cohesiveness and a group spirit to be formed.
#3 Increased profits and ROI
One reason why many of us choose virtual interaction over F2F is to save on expenses acquired from national and even international business travel. However, taking the other benefits of F2F interaction aside it could actually be more cost-effective to take those business trips. A 2013 study from Oxford Economics discovered that it could actually lead to increased revenue and profits. These business trips included meetings, conventions and sales trips. It also highlights in-person meetings are much more likely to result in keeping customers, converting prospects and building relationships.
Whether it’s for networking, business projects, client building, or any other business venture, we need to hold on to traditional face-to-face business. Head to the networking event, travel across the country or just go for a coffee.
This post was brought to you by Portland Brown, a serviced apartments provider in London and Bristol.
Main image by Drew Leavy @ Flickr.