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Why digital communication is no substitute for face-to-face management

Eduardo Paolozzi, Landscape, Flowers Gallery

With the business environment now relying heavily on digital technology for communication, the importance of face-to-face management is emphasised by Jerry S. Wilson at Businessweek.com.

Wilson is a board-elected senior vice-president of the Coca-Cola Company, where he serves as president of the global McDonald's division, and is also co-author of the book Managing Brand You.

He believes people need actual human interactions, digital contact is a poor substitute, and information relayed digitally can be unreliable or misleading.

Wilson insists face-to-face interactions allow people in the workplace to discuss issues thoroughly and are more conducive to identifying and addressing potential problems and solutions as well as discovering alternative approaches. What's more, nonverbal cues can be read during real-life meetings to assess true reactions to an idea or opinions.

Managers who excel in face-to-face interaction are good listeners and are able to understand or empathise with their colleagues.

Don't Displace Face to Face
Jerry S. Wilson