Good communication is necessary for all types of jobs and relationships. As I am gearing up for another conference call today with a prospective client, I began thinking about the pros and cons of meeting a client face to face versus over a phone line.
Face To Face
An easy way to see facial expressions during the conversation.
Easy to tell when another party wants to chime in with a thought.
Generally faster than waiting for a response to email or IM.
Commute time can cut into how long a meeting can last.
Points are not remembered as easily due to outside distractions.
Someone may be too shy to state what they truly think.
Conversations can vear off into other tangents.
Meetings can be a waste of time for freelancers if the other party has no interest in committing to a project.
Shy people might get tongue-tied and come across as incompetent.
A person feels safer without the chance for rejection by the other party.
The other party can not see nervousness.
Ability to hide physical differences so the other party is not bias.
Lower cost than traveling to visit for a face to face.
Feedback is instant, as with face to face.
The availability of each person involved.
A person stuck behind the computer tends to forget social skills.
Difficult to get a physical impression of how interested the other person truly is.
The agenda can be too limited.
Personal relationships or understanding are not created within a business interaction.
More uncontrolled distractions than in a restricted office setting.
Comments can be stepped on by another party during the conversation.
If the facilitator is not a strong personality, the call can deteriorate if someone takes over.
Please add your thoughts in the comments below and state which you prefer.