What presence are you giving to your clients, co-workers, superiors or subordinates?
Webinar vs. Seminar
Videoconference/Teleconference vs. Conference
Phone Call vs. Personal Visit
If you are delivering or receiving general advise, or directives, then webinar, video/tele-conferencing, and phone calls are fine. You are not attempting to communicate anything that needs explicit trust.
Now, if you are trying to build trust, launch a new product or product line, get certifications from a client (that you can exclusively, or semi-exclusively) build their product(s) or develop and leverage personal relationships for mutual benefit, then NOTHING is as good as a personal presence.
The personal presence gives lots of metadata that you cannot apply in any other method of communication. If you are giving a webinar for example, do you see or hear anyone? People will see and hear you. If a person has a question, he or she will have to type it in, or speak into a microphone, and deal with technically related delays. In a video or teleconference, same thing, delays. Phone calls are slightly better in that you can hear the intonation of a person’s voice (glee, annoyance, sadness, anger, sarcasm, etc.), but even though that communication is in real time, there’s no chance to see their body language.
In-person communications are always best. In a seminar, conference, and the on-site visit. The advantages are:
- You can have physical contact – Human beings like physical contact! If you know them well, pat them on the back! Shake some hands! Of course, practice safe behaviors, (more on that later).
- They can see your face. Faces are EXTREMELY important in human relations.
- You can look them in the eye!
- You can feel what’s going on and they can feel what’s going on.
- You can build trust one person at a time, and leverage each other’s relationships: I trust him, so I’ll recommend him to this other person that I trust and trusts me.
That’s enough of this subject for now. Think about it, and reply if you like!
Small Business IT Project Analyst, Office Automation Expert
Herbert, McCrumb & Associates
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