Heading into 2021, I have been thinking a lot about how I can better communicate with my team in the new year. My biggest piece of communication advice for any entrepreneur would be to make more phone calls!
Working remotely has exposed, at least for me, my reliance on non-verbal cues and one-on-one check-ins to effectively connect and communicate with my team and partners. Leveraging video meetings has certainly helped.
However, for me, I still feel like I am missing a genuine connection to my people! My solution…making more phone calls!
Below are my 5 reasons why phone calls are more meaningful and productive than video conferencing!
1. You are giving someone your undivided attention.
A good phone call is like a good podcast. When done right, they are captivating, they hold your attention, and you look forward to the next episode. A direct call can do the same thing. Calls show you are invested in a person, mono-e-mono.
2. Phone calls are more personal.
While you can argue, being able to “see” someone is more personal than a phone call, it is my experience phone calls provide a more comfortable environment for people to share and open up. It can be hard to be open when everyone is quite literally staring at your face.
3. It’s ok to be different.
Phone calls are being replaced by email and text messages. Taking the path less traveled, in this case, making phone calls, can give you an advantage over your competition or coworkers when competing for someone’s time.
4. You can’t attach an agenda.
Even video meetings come with agendas. While I never host a meeting without a clear agenda, the downside of staying on-task is staying on-task. Phone calls have a natural tendency to wander. When my team is working on a new idea or thinking of ways to enhance current processes, I like to turn off the camera, toss the agenda, and turn up the creativity! Honest feedback is invaluable for any entrepreneur; make sure you are getting it!
5. Mitigate challenges.
We have all seen it…the slow connection, the constantly muted participant, the kids/animals/significant others walking through the background. Video calls are distracting, even when executed flawlessly.
A phone call eliminates these common challenges that are disruptive and can significantly impact the effectiveness of a meeting. Not to mention you can wear a t-shirt to match the sweatpants everyone knows you have on beneath your desk!