Face-to-face conversation still the best way to build relationships

January 28, 2014By Behind the Shelf Blog

Posted by Megan Moyer

In my 20+ years in the workforce, I’ve interacted with all kinds of personalities, although every now and then I do come across a new one. One challenge in any new professional situation is learning everyone’s communication style and adapting to it.

In one of my first corporate jobs, I was in a marketing department that included marcomm and product managers. There was one product manager that could send particularly biting emails that would leave you singed after reading. But, when you went and talked to him face-to-face, he did not spew the same venom verbally and you could come to an understanding relatively easily. I wouldn’t go as far to say that he was a teddy bear in person, but if I was successful in getting talked to him face-to-facehim to laugh (a tried-and-true tactic), then he would be perfectly reasonable.

I worked at another company that had offices in two states, so we all had instant messaging to make it easy to converse with colleagues miles and miles away. The problem was that people in the same office used it to communicate with coworkers instead of going over and talking to them in person. It was an office of less than 70 people, so that was surprising to me. A misuse of technology in my mind.

It’s easy to rely on the convenience of technological devices and to hide behind a screen to communicate with your colleagues. It’s better to get up and interact and speak with them face-to-face. It’s a basic element of relationship building. I enjoyed reading this article about the art of conversation in a digital world. Are there tips in that article you can utilize to improve your communications skills today?

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