Tech

Face-to-Face Communication – Old Fashioned? Not!

It is unbelievable how dependent we have change into as a society on digital communication gadgets! E-mail, textual content messaging, PDA’s, cell telephones, video conferencing, blackberries, blueberries, rasberries, and extra…have taken the place of excellent quaint, face-to-face communication resulting in many interpersonal difficulties and miscommunications in at present’s office.

You might be considering…Why enhance my interpersonal abilities when most companies do 99% of communication by phone, teleconferencing, videoconferencing, e-mail, and on uncommon events, snail mail. A well-liked mind-set at present…however, is it actually the right approach? “Face-to-face communication stays probably the most highly effective human interplay,” says Kathleen Begley, Ed.D., creator of Face-to-Face Communication, Making Human Connections in a Expertise-Pushed World. “As great as digital gadgets are, they’ll by no means totally change the intimacy and immediacy of individuals conversing in the identical room and it has labored for thousands and thousands of years.”

In enterprise, we speak about “B2B” (enterprise to enterprise) and “B2C” (enterprise to shopper) strategies. I attempt to buck the pattern (in a constructive approach!) to emphasize the significance of face-to-face communication. You may hear me speak lots in regards to the “P2P” (people-to-people) connections and the way vital it’s to get past expertise and speak face-to-face with pals, household, colleagues, prospects, distributors, and the like. You might suppose that is a bit old school, however in my view, there isn’t any substitution for the human, up-close and private contact. Do not get me mistaken, there’s a place for the terrific expertise instruments we’ve got at present and I take advantage of it often, but it surely’s not all the time my first or best option.

A number of many years in the past, John Naisbitt, in his mega 1960’s best-seller, Megatrends: Ten New Instructions Reworking Our Lives, introduced a brand new idea to the forefront referred to as “excessive tech, excessive contact.” His thought was that “as human beings grew to become able to nameless digital communication, they’d concurrently want extra close-up private interplay.” Appears to me that he was proper on track!

We dwell in a society when flocking to the native espresso store or diner for espresso chats with enterprise associates or pals is a sworn statement to our want for human togetherness, particularly when most espresso lovers could make a latte or cappuccino proper of their houses. Take into consideration the fortunes espresso institutions are making on our want for face-to-face communication! The people-to-people connections…

We hear of the various kids (and adults) who spend numerous hours alone taking part in video video games. Nevertheless, The Recreation Manufacturing Affiliation reported in 2003 that household board recreation gross sales (like Monopoly and Scrabble) are booming and rising at 20% per yr. Skull has not too long ago come out with a complete new line of board video games for our “little folks” (ages 3+). The people-to-people connections begin at an early age – if you have not heard it, ask me to inform you my “Papa Zitto” story!

Even when catastrophe strikes and the information media carry these occasions into our houses and workplaces through TV, radio and the Web, we search out alternatives to share grief. I personally waited in line for nearly three hours with a whole bunch of others to go to Floor Zero in New York when it opened to the general public in December 2001. Many individuals additionally left makeshift shrines close by to honor the victims of that tragedy. The people-to-people connections…

We lead hectic, multi-tasking lives each at house and within the office as of late and we discover the necessity for stability much more vital than in days passed by. We perceive that expertise might be impersonal, but it surely’s fast! We all know we have to find time for extra people-to-people connections however, the fact of the hectic tempo does not depart us a lot time for this extra intimate type of communication. You might be considering, is not it a lot sooner to make a fast telephone name, ship a quick e-mail, or hook up through video-conferencing to have a gathering of the minds? Sure and no. It is a communications paradox…sooner just isn’t all the time higher.

So the higher query could also be, how can we make one of the best of each worlds – expertise and face-to-face, people-to-people connections?

Simply as fashions are redesigned and are available again with a variation on a mode from days-gone- by, I consider it’s time for redesigning and revitalizing face-to-face (P2P) communication abilities.

We have to get the stability proper! Folks-to-people (P2P) communication abilities stay one of many major success components in enterprise, even on this age of expertise. There are a lot of conditions – usually these involving battle, harm emotions, excessive precedence, or a big sum of cash – that demand enterprise folks take the time and bother to get in the identical room to share data. Video-conferencing has change into an excellent simulation and cost-effective technique when people are in distant places, however there may be nonetheless no substitute for good, old school, face-to-face communication.

Do not take my phrase for it…Let’s check out what among the consultants are saying.

Tom Peters, internationally recognized enterprise guru, says with out reservation that you must continuously attend to your face-to-face communication. Not to take action, will result in profession catastrophe. “We consider in excessive tech, excessive contact,” Peters writes. “No query, expertise is the Nice Enabler. However, paradoxically, now the human bit is extra, not much less, vital than ever earlier than.”

Sheila Hodge, creator of International Smarts: The Artwork of Speaking and Deal Making Wherever within the World, says “The fashionable workplace is stuffed with devices – computer systems and the Web, uplinks and downlinks, videoconferencing, and on-line databases. Many individuals suppose they need to let the flowery expertise deal with the messy process of interfacing with folks.”

Jo-Ellan Dimitrius, in her e-book Studying Folks, talks about how younger, technically oriented workers have a tendency to speak principally in laptop chat rooms. “If you wish to change into a greater communicator, you need to make a acutely aware effort to have interaction different folks (in particular person),” she writes. “Even probably the most entrenched Web junkie can be taught the true which means of ‘chat’ if the need is there, however you need to get off the sofa and make it occur.”

Gary McClain and Deborah Romaine of their e-book, The Every thing Managing Folks Guide, put it this fashion…”Constant, day by day face-to-face communication promotes extra than simply good emotions; it additionally promotes efficient and collaborative teamwork.”

“One of the vital areas of communication to get proper in enterprise is the one-on-one conditions – particularly providing recommendation, constructive suggestions, and annual efficiency value determinations,” says Chris Roebuck in Efficient Communication.

Certainly one of my favourite quotes acknowledged very just by Margaret Wheatley, Turning to One One other: Easy Conversations to Restore Hope for the Future, says “I can consider we are able to change the world if we begin speaking to at least one one other once more.”

Appears like we’re on to one thing right here…So, what are you able to do? Begin out by taking an trustworthy have a look at your communication strategies and your angle about expertise vs. (P2P) face-to-face interplay. Are you e-mailing extra and assembly much less for monetary causes? Are you avoiding human contact principally due to a scarcity of interpersonal abilities? If the latter is true, it is advisable to take motion earlier than it is too late.

The following time you might be tempted to ship an e-mail, textual content message or make a telephone name for aside from routine functions, cease! Get again to fundamentals. Exit of your consolation zone and, as an alternative, ship the e-mail, textual content message or make the decision to arrange a face-to-face, in particular person assembly with the particular person behind the expertise! Why? As a result of it really works!

Make the people-to-people connections… You and your small business might be glad you probably did!

A Constructive Office Means Enterprise! TM

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