Face to face engagement is key in the world of business. Exhibitions, events and networking all require the need to physical human communication. Today, the world is highly saturated with easy to use technology and, chances are, there is an app for that. Even picking up the telephone is deemed archaic.
This lack of connection, especially for individuals climbing the corporate ladder, is desensitising people against the most natural form of engagement. With many in businesses consuming information and data through webinars, videos and digital documents, many are missing out on the power of inspiring speakers, the creation of personal connections and potential opportunities for growth. Below are the top five reasons face to face engagement is imperative.
Reading Body Language
Research suggests that 80% to 90% of the meaning of a conversation is garnered though the nonverbal cues; body language, posture and facial expression. Unless a master at the dead pan expression, individuals are much easier to read in the flesh than via the telephone or emails. Actions really do speak louder than words.
Hands up if you’ve sat in on a conference call and zoned out? Been in a Skype meeting and gazed out the window or planned your lunch? Face-to-face engagement means that people have no choice but to be in the conversation.
Equally, this also means that you cannot simply sit on the end of the phone and hope nobody remembers you are actually there. You simply have no choice but to participate. Furthermore, at business conferences and events, attendees are far more likely to engage with keynote speakers in the flesh than viewing their talk via a live stream or webinar.
When it comes to meetings, people are quite happy to while away a couple or hours on the end of the phone. Equally, slouched in front of an online conference is not going to keep anybody engaged. Face to face engagement tends to be shorter and more concise as there is greater pressure to get to the point.
How many times have you received an email that has got your back up? Or has anybody ever made your blood boil in a conference call? It is incredibly hard to judge what somebody is saying when they are just words on a screen or a voice at the end of the phone. Being physically present and in the moment allows for clear communication and explanation which means misunderstandings can be avoided or issues cleared up quickly.