With technology moving at an ever increasing pace, numerous tasks are now completed electronically; which were previously carried out face to face. The office is now becoming a collection of people’s homes, all linked together remotely through freelancing websites and Skype. However, when it comes to meetings, is it better to meet face to face, or can a video conference do the job just as well?
It is true that flying from state to state and having meetings in different cities can be a costly way to do business, but for many, it is still the best way to close a deal. However, there are many ways that you can cut the cost of a business trip so that it does not become an expensive feat.
Traveling in economy class can help, as well as not staying overnight in a hotel. You can also make the trip more economical by using a chauffeur service such as a DC limo in Washington, instead of renting a car. Limos also offer you a place to work from the airport to the meeting, optimizing workflow.
You may think that video conferencing will save you time, however, it can have a detrimental effect on the meeting. If you are meeting face to face, then you will have had a room booked and time set aside in everyone’s schedule to attend. If you have a video conference, the meeting may be rushed, or people’s attentions may be limited and easily diverted.
Engagement is similar to time. A video conference is different from a physical meeting; therefore, your concentration may not be as focused as sitting in a room together, listening to a single person speaking because distractions are limited. The problem with a video conference is that you might be in a room with other people who are causing accidental distractions. Therefore, you may miss crucial information, or the speaker may notice and become offended; damaging your business relationship.
We tend to forget sometimes that body language is a crucial part of communication, and not just from the person speaking, but for everyone in the room. If you can see someone’s reaction, then you can acquire insight into that person’s frame of mind. A lack of body language can cause confusion and misunderstanding, which could lead to a delay in reaching an agreement. You will also come across as more sincere.
Other Talks of Business
When you speak to someone face to face and have to spend a scheduled amount of time with one another, this can lead to the benefit of broaching other avenues of business. If you are online, most individuals will end the call once the original verdict has been made. However, if you meet for a business lunch or over a cup of coffee, you can offer insight and opinions onto other subject matters. This can build a working relationship, as well as set up other lines of business.