In the rising era of hybrid models and work from home, we are here to talk about something that might not sit well with the change enthusiasts. Although being in the IT domain we are the flag bearers of cross-functional global teams and remote working environments, there is one practice that we also endorse to the core and that is onsite visits.
In the modern workforce culture, people are running businesses successfully with remotely working teams and the IT world is betting on the upcoming Work from Home and Hybrid working models with extensive technologysolutions that can make remote working seamless. Being one of the organizations that had a successful remote working culture during the pandemic restrictions, we are still here to advocate an old practice that we think must not become obsolete and that is face-to-face communications.
While we are the flag bearers of the progressive workplace that we are building for the next generation, we still think that people do not understand the significance of face-to-face communications. Thus, we are dedicating this blog to helping people understand why face-to-face meetings should be standard practice even in the modern workforce scenario.
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Laying the groundwork:
But before we move to the benefits, let us first understand what we mean by face-to-face communications. When we talk about face-to-face communication as a standard practice, we talk about it in the form of client meetings. We also think that having a harmonious working team under one roof is also a practice that has its own set of pros, but here we are to advocate the benefits of having face-to-face meetings with a confirmed client or even a potential client with a high conversion possibility.
Being an organization with a global clientele, we understand that conducting onsite meetings cannot be feasible every time we onboard a new client, but there are certain practices that we follow to ensure that we are not just connected with tele conferencing or video conferencing.
Here are a few of the mediums or ways that are standard practice in the IT domain for onsite face-to-face communication with clients:
Onsite sale closing meetings:
While we connect with our offshore clients over emails, teleconferencing and other video and audio conferencing mediums, when we have finalized the client, we prefer to conduct face-to-face meetings to close the sale.
Business requirement understanding meetings:
For enterprise clients that require enterprise solutions that align with their business processes and organizational culture, we send our team of business analysts and project managers to better understand the work culture of our client and integrate those values and processes into the IT solutions that we deliver.
Client visits at our premises:
For those clients who hire dedicated resources or want to examine the IT infrastructure that we have developed along with the resource pool that we offer, they often visit our offices and conduct detailed tours and meetings with our resources to better connect with their cross-functional teams.
To keep in touch with our global clients and to get the opportunity of connecting with potential clients, many IT companies and other such organizations from different industries conduct business tours where they organize a meet and greet with current and potential clients of different countries or regions.
Although each of these ways has the ulterior motive of conducting face-to-face communication with the clients, the reason, purpose and benefits of each of these mediums are different. Now that the mediums and ways are cleared, let’s move to the benefits of conducting face-to-face meetings or onsite meetings.
Benefits of face-to-face meetings:
Imagine there are 2 scenarios; one is where you are cold calling a person to enroll for an amazing service that will definitely help their business. On the other end, you are a part of the exhibition where you meet a certain individual with whom you strike a formal conversation and then you steer him towards your product that can make a significant contribution to their organization’s productivity and profitability. Out of these 2 scenarios, which scenario do you think has the better possibility of converting the lead into a client?
The answer for most will be obvious and it is because of the face-to-face meeting that you could establish a rapport with your client. When you have the opportunity to explain your product or service in person, you have a better chance of converting that lead into a client if both the parties have a mutual desire and a beneficial situation to work on.
Understand non-verbal cues:
Every culture has its own non-verbal signs and there are tons of theories that say that people may lie when it comes to verbal communication but the split second reactions and your body language which is also known as paralanguage never does. These things are rather more natural and inhibited into a person’s personality and they can also give real insights into a person.
Did you know that the way a person moves their eyes before moving can indicate a few things? For instance, when a person looks up while talking, it indicates that a person is recalling something that he has prepared or that he is thinking about a topic that is being discussed. Also, when the person lifts their eyebrows on certain topics it means they are positively amazed or happy with the discussion. With these gestures or rather non-verbal cues, one can get true insights regarding the other person and can steer the conversation accordingly.
Strong and personalized bond:
When you can put a face to a voice, your brain can make better judgment and can better trust that person. While this can also happen over videoconferencing, the idea is to show some efforts to ensure that the other party can create a relationship of trust. Whether you visit the client during a business tour or invite them to have a look at the facility and management that you have established, such visits can strengthen the bond that you have with your clients and are essential when you wish to create a recurring business or a long-term relationship with your clients.
Removes distractions from the conversation:
When you are conducting a face-to-face meeting with your clients, such meetings guarantee the undivided attention of both parties. Even if the meeting is postponed or postponed from the agreed time, the person will always create an environment where the meeting is not disturbed. One of the biggest problems of teleconferencing is these unannounced distractions that can steer the person away from the conversation and such distractions sometimes also hamper the meeting entirely resulting in a sore experience that might deeply affect the decision-making of the client.
It is all about priorities:
While the IT world is creating different solutions such as immersive metaverse or other video conferencing tools that can ensure seamless digital meeting experiences, nothing can replace the physical face-to-face meetings especially when it comes to creating a bond with your clients. Let us know in the comments whether the practice of face-to-face meetings should stay or not and we can also discuss other benefits of onsite meetings.
Pranjal Mehta is the Managing Director of Zealous System, a leading software solutions provider. Having 10+ years of experience and clientele across the globe, he is always curious to stay ahead in the market by inculcating latest technologies and trends in Zealous.