Back when I used to run a small nonprofit in Boston, my co-director and I thought it would help board productivity to host all our meetings virtually. Picking a convenient location for the entire group continued to be an issue, so we opted for a Google Hangout-first strategy.
That same year we almost ripped each other’s heads off.
After a series of intense, heated meetings, I required the group to attend an in-person team meeting. And within five minutes of the meeting start time, we were able to resolve all miscommunications and issues.
That’s when I was hit with a critical lesson: There isn’t a single technology that will replace the power of in-person relationship building.
While digital collaboration and communication tools can complement our remote needs and digital networking, an appropriate dose of face-to-face interactions is needed. If my little story isn’t enough convincing, these seven stats may do the trick –
say they prefer face-to-face meetings
say they build stronger, more meaningful business relationships during in-person business meetings and conferences
say they prefer in-person conferences due to the ability to read body language and facial expressions
say they prefer in-person conferences because they lead to more social interactions and the ability to bond with co-workers/clients
say they prefer in-person business meetings because they allow for more complex strategic thinking
say they prefer in-person conferences and business meetings because they provide a better environment for tough, timely decision making
say face-to-face meetings are essential for long-term business relationships