I recently read a very interesting article from Forbes Insights called The Case for Face-to-Face. Forbes surveyed over 750 business executives about their meeting and travel preferences, and what they see as benefits from different meeting options. While 58% said they are traveling less for business, and 59% said they are using technology-driven meetings more since the recession, 84% of executives expressed an overwhelming preference for face-to-face meetings. The reason? Here is what 85% of respondents said: “Face-to-face meetings help build stronger, more meaningful relationships.”
Not surprising. I've seen the power of face-to-face executive dialog in a variety of customer program settings - advisory boards, executive sponsor programs, summits and more. When you have a seat at the table with your key customers for input and direction on how you can help solve their business issues, you gain collective knowledge to help guide your strategic direction. These in-person engagements foster collaboration, brainstorming and sharing of best practices ... and more importantly, build solid customer relationships.