Virtual meeting technology has provided a quick, cost effective and easy solution to sharing information and knowledge.

However, the beginning of this month saw one of the largest technology companies in existence hold two large scale face-to-face events in the space of one week. Apple kicked off March by using their Spring Forward event to launch their new Apple Watch, Macbook and Apple TV and this was quickly followed with Apple’s Annual Shareholders Meeting.

So if people who work in the fields of virtual technology and social media are still choosing to meet face-to-face, there must be something compelling about these personal meetings that cannot be replicated with even the most high tech conferencing tools.

Almost 5 years ago, The Center for Hospitality Research published ‘The Future of Meetings: The Case for Face-to-Face’. With the rate of adoption of technology today, we think their 3 key benefits for face-to-face meetings are more important to remember than ever.

Benefit 1: Ability to capture your audience’s attention

Have you ever been on a conference call and let your mind wander to other tasks? The temptation to multitask during virtual meetings causes a huge distraction. Face-to-face meetings allow for more focused attention, facilitating effective and engaged learning. This is most useful when trying to initiate something new or align people around a new direction, with the multi-sensory experience used in live events to engage your audience being difficult to replicate in the virtual environment.

Benefit 2: Power to inspire and energize a positive emotional climate

In face-to-face meetings we are able to experience all facets of language and communication; body language, facial expressions and gestures all add to the words and verbal cues that remain one-dimensional in virtual settings. This allows you to inspire and motivate your event participants by generating emotions in a direct and immediate way, emotions that support collaboration, innovation and performance.

Benefit 3: Capacity to build human networks and relationships

People rarely attend meetings just to hear the speaker in the room, the real value is in building stronger, more meaningful business relationships outside the room. Face-to-face events exploit serendipity to its max; they foster the chaotic process of networking, allowing colleagues to reconnect, old friends to bump into each other and new relationships to be formed with the person who walks past and your friend says you just have to meet. This business relationship building in an energised environment is impossible to replace virtually. 

Convinced a live event is the most effective way to go? Contact us today to find out how we can help inspire your audience by igniting the spark and energy that face-to-face meetings provide.