Zoom is great, and I still use it nearly every day. But let’s be honest, there is no substitute for meeting someone in person. We all crave and respond best to face-to-face connections.
It’s interesting that before the pandemic, I couldn’t get anyone to take a video call with me. It was always, ‘Can we just do this by phone?’ Then in March 2020, the world as we knew it shut down, and Zoom became ubiquitous. People craved connection. They wanted and needed to see each other.
But life on Zoom is draining. Maybe eight months to a year into the pandemic, we were all like: ‘Get me out of here! I’m tired of staring at a screen all day.’ So, I started setting up phone calls again with people.
There was still a void, though. We still needed to see each other. So, when the world opened up a little, we eagerly, albeit cautiously, started going to conferences again. It was awkward as we all tried to balance the thrill of being around people with the need to remain safe.
My point is this: People really need human connections. Whether it is with family and friends, or even with the Market Research Client Solutions guy. We need face-to-face contact. It is part of how we Live Well™.
Making a connection with someone is such a powerful thing. I am not talking about this in the context of sales. This is just the context of being human. We need connections. We need to make and enjoy memories.
Visiting in person fills both of those needs.
You may not remember one of the seven Zoom calls you take in one day, but you will remember getting out of your office and having lunch with someone.
With in-person meetings:
- You look forward to making a memory.
- You spend time together and actually make the memory.
- You can look back and remember the connection and experience you shared.
Conversations that matter
Zoom calls typically last about 30 minutes, whereas in-person meetings are usually for an hour. That extra time allows you to follow little conversation threads that might otherwise have been missed. You can have deeper, more meaningful discussions.
You can also ask powerful questions and dig into the answers. What is their work life like? What are their challenges? Their opportunities? You can get into the nitty-gritty. As the saying goes, ‘The Devil is in the details.’
With in-person meetings, you can also understand greater nuance. Behavioral cues are not the same on Zoom as they are in real life because it is a completely different way of communicating.
And finally, shaking hands is a big deal. Touching someone makes you human. It makes for a stronger connection.
So, again, there is no replacement for meeting someone in person.
In-person vs Zoom
As much as I would like to, I can’t have all my meetings in person. There just isn’t enough time. So, I have to prioritize.
For day-to-day work, Zoom is fine. I can stay in touch with people and do what needs to be done.
If a big deal is on the line, though, then in-person meetings are invaluable. And a big deal can be a lot of things. It can be a big sale, a high-priority project, or staying connected with a long-term or high-value client.
When you travel to meet someone, it shows them how much you care. How much you value them, their company, and the opportunity to work together. It can make or cement a connection.
There is simply no substitute for meeting someone face-to-face.
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