Face-to-face communication remains important in business

Thursday 24 January 2013

Business meeting

Although the internet has created many networking opportunities for businesses and individuals, the importance of face-to-face communication must not be forgotten.

This is the view of recruitment firm Hays, which warns that an over-reliance on the web is causing many people to lose their interpersonal or soft skills.

According to the firm, some employees are struggling to communicate with their own colleagues let alone with external customers, suppliers and partners.

Barney Ely, director of Hays Human Resources, noted that the technology boom has opened up many networks online and created real, focused, commercial opportunities.

"One merit of making connections online is the opportunity to tap into a vast international knowledge base," he stated.

“The internet is not just a new, expansive way to communicate with other individuals. Businesses are exploiting these new networks, such as web-based crowdsourcing sites that allow new ideas to be shared with user communities, many of them specialists in a given field."

However, Mr Ely said it is a "high risk strategy" for individuals to neglect person-to-person connections in a knowledge-based economy.

"Staff who are isolated by email can become a threat to an employers’ competitiveness, so offering formal training in networking skills would benefit both companies and the individuals concerned," he noted.

Posted by Sarah Parish