Why We’ve Implemented Video Conferencing
Very often, clients meet with their lawyers by first calling and scheduling an appointment. Then, either the client or the lawyer have to put aside whatever he or she was working on, pack up all the relevant paper files needed for the meeting, and travel to the office of the other person. After checking in with a receptionist, the client or the lawyer sit in a reception area and thumb through an old Time magazine waiting to be called for the conference. When finally invited in to the office or conference room, several minutes of "pleasantries" are exchanged, before the real subject of the conference is discussed. Following the "meat" of the conference, the parties pack up their files, exchange more pleasantries and say their "goodbyes", before traveling back to their respective offices to make notes of the meeting. This might take all day - or all afternoon - just to accomplish 30 minutes of actual productive meeting time. At a lawyer's rate of $400 per hour, a conference that should have cost only $200 may actually cost the client $1,600 or more in fees, plus travel expenses, parking charges, and so on.
In a effort to avoid the scenario set forth in the foregoing paragraph, we encourage telephonic conferences.
However, we can't deny that, in many cases, there are benefits to "face-to-face" conversation.
For that reason, for situations that warrant it, we encourage video conferences. A video conference facilitates a "face-to-face" conversation and all the benefits that go along with it, without the associated time, cost and expense.
What are the benefits of "face-to-face" communication? Here are six various benefits:
1. Shows body language
According to research, more than 90% of human communication consists of body language. When you see the way that the person you are talking to reacts, you are able to better understand how they are feeling. You get live feedback translated through the body language and facial expressions. You can also hear the tone of voice which makes it easier to interpret the person’s feelings, and you are able to show your own reactions and emotions.
2. Builds relationships
Another benefit of face-to-face communication is that it helps in expanding your network and enhancing future communication. It provides a "feel" of friendliness which can have the effect of boosting the success of your business and personal relationships. Email and phone conversations don't give you the same opportunity to build camaraderie.
3. Values the other person
When you make the effort to actually see the other person, and when you show them through your expressions that you are listening and that you care about what they are saying, you show that you value the other person and what they have to say.
4. Boosts effectiveness
Efficiency is so important, especially in the business world. Imagine having to explain a whole project through an email and then spend the whole day responding to questions. A face-to-face meeting between people allows the issues to be all be addressed at once, and boosts overall creativity and energy.
5. Enhances confidentiality
Although (with limited exceptions) all communications between attorney and client are confidential and privileged, face-to-face communication eases the revelation of sensitive or delicate information to a trusted person in a private setting.
6. Enhances trust and credibility
With face-to-face communication, you can explain clearly and answer questions with integrity. You are able to actually see how your words and actions align. This enhances credibility and helps build trust.
Although the benefits of actual physical face-to-face communication are numerous, there are obvious disadvantages. For example, it can be difficult to actually find and schedule the time to meet people. Emailing, texting, or talking on the phone are faster (especially if the person you want to communicate with is in another city or country). Also, some people find it uncomfortable or anxiety-inducing to communicate physically face to face. Perhaps most importantly, as described in the first paragraph above, scheduling, traveling to, and participating in a physical face-to-face meeting is inefficient, time-consuming, and expensive. However, these disadvantages can be overcome by scheduling a video conference through a platform like the one that Almquist Law uses.
In the end, making the effort for face-to-face communication is definitely worth it. The benefits of face-to-face communication are much more than the disadvantages, and those benefits can be obtained through face-to-face video conferencing.
Visit our Video Conferences page for more information or to schedule a conference.