Computer skills are considered essential in today’s business environment, as are skills at project management, planning, and problem-solving. But, according to LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner, the number 1 skills gap in business these days is communication.
We tend to believe that technology has improved our communications, and in some ways, it has. However, it’s a two-edged sword, and research has shown that face-to-face meetings are still the most effective and successful form of business communication. Humans evolved to communicate face-to-face, and it’s much harder to build trust and encourage engagement during virtual communications, even if cameras are on and everyone can see each other.
The generation that came of age behind mobile phones and computer screens are particularly in need of training in this area. (See this article as well.)
The importance of face-to-face interaction is well-supported by research. Below are some examples from the linked infographic:
- Remote meetings generate on average 10.43 ideas, while in-person meetings generate an average of 13.36
- Nearly 100% of people say face-to-face meetings are essential for long-term business relationships
- For every dollar companies invest in travel, they receive $12.50 in value
- The close rate for in-person meetings is 40%
- The average company would lose 17% of its profits if it eliminated business travel
But opportunities for face-to-face meetings are wasted if your people do not have the skills to manage the interaction in a way that will maximize results.
Many people in the workforce do not even know, much less or practice, the foundational skills of effective communication, such as eye connection, vocal tone, gestures, posture, facial animation and movement. If someone has not developed and honed the skills of assessing the needs of their listeners, then getting and maintaining their attention, they will not be able to motivate them to take action.
ProComm Ltd.’s flagship program, Present with Confidence, utilizes a highly participatory format which accelerates learning while at the same time creating a fun and supportive environment for the participants. The combination of knowledge, practice, and skilled feedback over two days delivers lasting results and behavior change.
Our next open-enrollment program is in the Chicago area on September 18-19. You can register for it here. Alternatively, we can deliver the program in-house for your whole team. Contact us here, or call 877-296-3121, extension 1.