Is Conference Calling Replacing Face-to-Face Meetings
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Conference calling and web application sharing conference calling are the
rage right now and becoming the new technology of choice for many businesses.
Businesses who are either focused on going “green” or those who are trying to
leverage profit to the bottom-line by saving on travel expenses are flocking to
use these services, but can and will conference calling ever actually replace
Our business is conference calling and web conferencing. We’re technology
experts at helping you to use and implement teleconferencing and web
conferencing in your daily business strategies effectively. You could say that
we’re “bullish” on conference calling, but even we realize that face-to-face
meetings will never be totally replaced by these exciting new technologies.
Why won’t conference calling replace face-to-face meetings? Sometimes the
deal is all about people, the nuances of bargaining, negotiation, and deal
brokering, is based on a subtle give and take, psychology, non-verbal cues,
sometimes even demeanor, and your own presence and personality. Although
conference calling and even web conferencing with video can do many things to
move selling, a deal, or the negotiation process forward, the culmination of
these efforts will most likely still be done with a final face-to-face meeting.
So why use conference calling at all? Conference calling can definitely
replace many of the initial meetings and conversations held to nail down
important aspects of a deal, saving a business time and money. Conference
calling can still bind a geographically separated team together that is working
on a project, and enhance communications between team member and clients. But
most importantly, the use of conference calling can save money typically spent
on travel expenses for these preliminary meetings making a deal or project much
more lucrative in the long run.
So when should you use conference calling? Here are some of the times that
you may want to consider using conference calling instead of a business trip to
a client or prospect:
1. Team and member meeting introduction. Early contact with a client can
certainly be done with conference calling. Having your team member hear from the
client themselves what is important on a project can be done on the telephone
effectively and can be highly valuable to all members providing support and
services on a project. This communication can help everyone to keep and maintain
the proper focus when working on the project.
2. Selling presentations using PowerPoint slide shows and even software demos
can easily be done with web conferencing; a new twist on phone conferencing that
introduces the computer screen, video, and application sharing using the
Internet as the exchange medium.
3. Action planning, strategic planning and follow-up meetings can be
effectively done with conference calling. A spontaneous or quickly scheduled
meeting is perfectly suited to the use of conference calling; helping to connect
everyone on a project for a quick status check or an important change of
4. There are endless other scenarios in your own personal business dealings
when conference calling would save you time or money, increase employee
productivity by not having to leave the office, and not hurt the deal or
When should you not use conference calling? There are a few situations where
face-to-face communication is crucially important and may even be demanded.
These situations can change for each project but below are a few examples that
illustrate when personal contact is really better than conference calling.
1. A face-to-face meeting will be best to negotiate or bargain on a deal or
project or to close a deal and get the contract signed. In any meeting where
there is a high give and take exchange factor, conference calling may not be the
best way to handle the situation.
2. When there is a contentious problem that really must be resolved to move
the selling process or project forward. When tempers have flared due to a missed
deadline, missed benchmark, or change in a deliverable, a face-to-face meeting
is best. Clients may actually perceive your face-to-face visit as assigning
their project more “value”, in their eyes, and may actually demand this action
especially if the project has a high dollar value.
The bottom-line is that conference calling can easily replace planning
meetings or “feel good” visits, but conference calling will never replace the
personal touch that only a face-to-face meeting can provide in hard situations
or where a strong give and take between participants is expected in advance.
About the Author
Amy Linley gives practical and usable advice regarding communication and
meetings at AccuConference -
Find out more about our conference call, web conferencing and video conferencing
services from AccuConference -
Follow us @Scopulus_News
Article Published/Sorted/Amended on Scopulus 2007-12-10 21:35:57 in Business Articles