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8 Great Things About Face-to-Face Communication Most People Don’t Do Anymore Because of Technology

8 Great Things About Face-to-Face Communication Most People Don’t Do Anymore Because of Technology

For those of you who are under 30, you might not even remember a time when people didn’t constantly check their phones for texts, Facebook/Instagram/Twitter profiles, when they’re in someone else’s physical presence. Even talking on the phone has become a lost art for many people these days.

While we’re all in favor of technological advances, sometimes you have to mourn the loss of real communication, the kind that makes you feel good. You know, the kind that doesn’t require an electronic object to deliver your message.

Here are eight great things about face-to-face communication that most people don’t just don’t seem to do anymore thanks to the ever growing technology of our time.

1. Looking into each other’s eyes.

And no, we’re not talking about looking at someone’s eyes in a selfie on Facebook or Instagram. We’re talking about having their eyes just inches or mere feet away from yours.

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When you look into someone’s eyes, it connects the two of you. Sometimes it’s almost like you’re looking deep into their souls. You just can’t get that when someone texts you a photo of themselves. It’s just not the same.

2. Touching someone’s hand.

Body language comprises 80-90% of the real meaning of a message. But using technology to talk doesn’t give you the opportunity to reach out and touch someone (and no, we’re not talking about “Ma Bell” … which most young people probably don’t even know about).

Giving a hug, playfully giving an elbow jab, or touching someone to say, “I care”, is just something that can’t be done over Facebook.

3. Having someone’s full attention.

Nothing says, “you don’t matter to me” as much as being with someone who constantly checks their texts or picks up the phone when they’re with you. Instead, it says, “hold on – this person is more important than you.”

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While it may have become the “new normal” to do that, it is still disrespectful. What ever happened to the Golden Rule? If you want someone to pay attention to you, then you need to do the same – and put your phone away!

4. Receiving support & understanding.

Imagine sending a good friend of yours a long email asking for advice about something. No matter the content, you can’t help but think, “This would be so much better if I was actually looking at him face-to-face so I could explain it better.”

But because you live far enough apart where it’s not possible to see each other that often, you resort to email. Even the phone would be better that an email response. Sure, you’ll still get that sage advice, but nothing beats the interaction with your live human friend.

5. Growing your mind with deep conversation.

Talking about celebrity gossip and the funny cat video you just saw on Facebook can be fun, but it doesn’t help you become a better person. Talking with someone face-to-face helps you get into some pretty deep conversations.

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You can learn about yourself, the other person, or something you never knew before. Have you ever tried to get into a deep conversation over text? Well, not everyone’s fingers work as fast as others’! You could cover a lot more ground and in half the time if you can jut have discussions face-to-face.

6. Flirting.

Okay, admit it. How many of you have received texts or emails from someone you’re romantically interested in and thought, “Oh my…what did he/she mean by that?” Then you’re texting you best friend saying, “Okay, he said this .. what did it mean? Does he like me or is he just being nice because he ended his sentence with a smiley face?”

It’s better to see his or her real smiley face in person though. Messages are so often misinterpreted when they aren’t spoken in someone’s physical presence.

7. Sharing your innermost thoughts and emotions.

It’s scary sometimes to pour your heart out. We risk rejection that way. And that’s probably why people “test the waters” with texting, emails, and social media messages. It’s easier to hide behind your phone or computer than it is to look into someone’s eyes and share your feelings.

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But it’s so much more rewarding to do that! Getting a text that says, “luv u” isn’t as satisfying as someone hugging you tight and whispering the words, “I love you” into your ear.

8. Having someone really “get” you.

The energy that is exchanged with people when they are face-to-face can really lift you up. Talking in person allows you to really dig deep and really get to know each other. And when people know you, they understand you. Even if you have differences, you still can “get” each other because you spent quality time with them…one-on-one…face-to-face.

Sure, today’s technology is exciting and important. But we can remember fondly the days of face-to-face interactions. Maybe you should try “traveling back in time” and re-creating what it was like to live when we all actually talked to each other! You might just like it.

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Carol Morgan

Dr. Carol Morgan is the owner of HerSideHisSide.com, a communication professor, dating & relationship coach, TV personality, speaker, and author.

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Published on September 23, 2020

6 Effective Negotiation Skills to Master

6 Effective Negotiation Skills to Master

I don’t know about you, but many times when I hear the word negotiate I think of lawyers working out a business deal or having to do battle with a car salesman to try to get a lower price. Since I am in recruiting, the term “negotiation” comes up when someone is attempting to get a higher compensation package.

If we think about it, we tend to negotiate almost every day in a wide variety of things we do. Getting a handle on the important negotiation skills can be incredibly beneficial in many parts of our lives. Let’s take a look at 6 effective negotiation skills to master.

What is Negotiation?

First, let’s take a look at what negotiation is. Put simply, negotiation is a method by which people settle their differences. It is a process in which compromise or agreement can be reached without argument or dispute.

Anytime two people or sides disagree on something, they are almost always looking for the best possible outcome for their side. This could be from an individual’s perspective or someone representing an organization.

In reality, it’s rare that one side gets everything they want and the other side gets nothing that they are seeking. Seeking to reach a common ground of sorts where both sides feel like they are getting most of what they want is the key to being successful and maintaining the relationship.

Places We Negotiate

I’ve mentioned that we negotiate in just about all phases of our life. For those of you who are shaking your head no, I invite you to think about the following:

1. Work/Business

This one is the most obvious and it’s what naturally comes to mind when we think of the word “negotiate”.

When you first started at your current job, you might have asked for a higher salary. It could be that you delivered a huge new client to your company and used this as leverage in your most recent evaluation for more compensation. If you work with vendors (and just about every company does), maybe you worked them to a lower price or better contract terms.

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In recruiting, I negotiate with candidates and hiring managers all the time to land the best talent I can find. It’s very common to accept additional work with the (sometimes spoken, sometimes unspoken) agreement that it will benefit your career in the future.

Recently, I took over a project that was my boss was working on so that I would be able to attend a conference later in the year. And so it goes, we do this all day long at work.

2. Personal

I don’t know about you, but I negotiate with my spouse all the time. I’ll cook dinner with the understanding that she does the dishes. Who wants to mow the lawn and who wants to vacuum and dust the house?

I think we should save 10% for retirement, but she thinks 5% is plenty. Therefore, we save 8%. And don’t even get me started with my kids. My older daughter can borrow my car as soon as she finishes her chores. My younger daughter can go hang out with her friends when her homework is done.

Then, there are all those interactions in our personal lives outside our homes. The carpenter wants to charge me $12,000 to build a new deck. I think $10,000 is plenty so we agree on $11,000. I ask my neighbor if I can borrow his snowblower in the winter if I invite him over the next time I grill steak. And so on.

3. Ourselves

You didn’t expect this one, did you? We negotiate with ourselves all day long.

I’ll make sure I don’t skip my workout tomorrow since I’m going to have that extra piece of pizza. My spouse has been quiet the last few days, is it worth me asking her about, or should I leave it alone? I think the car place charged me for some repairs that weren’t needed, should I say something or just let it go? I know my friend has been having some personal challenges, should I check in with him? We’ve been friends for a long time, I’m sure he’d come to me if he needed help. I’ve got the #4 pick in this year’s Fantasy Football draft, should I choose a running back or a wide receiver?

Think about that non-stop voice inside your head. It always seems to be chattering away about something and many times, it’s us negotiating with ourselves. I’ll finish up that report that the boss needs before I turn on the football game.

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Why Negotiation Skills Are So Important

Put simply, negotiation skills are important because we all interact with other people, and not only other people but other organizations and groups of people as well.

We all rarely want the same thing or outcome. Most of the time a vendor is looking at getting you to pay a higher price for something than you want to spend. Therefore, it’s important to negotiate to some middle ground that works well for both sides.

My wife and I disagree on how much to save for retirement. If we weren’t married it wouldn’t be an issue. We’d each contribute how much we wanted to on our retirement funds. We choose to be married, so we have to come to some agreement that we both feel comfortable with. We have to compromise. Therefore, we have to negotiate.

If we each lived on a planet by ourselves, we would be free to do just about anything we wanted to. We wouldn’t have to compromise with anyone because we wouldn’t interact with anyone. We would make every choice unilaterally the way we wanted to.

As we all know, this isn’t how things are. We are constantly interacting with other people and organizations, each one with their own agenda’s, viewpoints, and opinions. Therefore, we have to be able to work together.

6 Negotiation Skills to Master

Having strong negotiation skills helps us create win-win situations with others, allowing us to get most of what we want in conjunction with others around us.

Now, let’s look at 6 effective negotiation skills to master.

1. Preparation

Preparation is a key place to start with when getting ready to negotiate. Being prepared means having a clear vision of what you want and how you’d go about achieving it. It means knowing what the end goal looks like and also what you are willing to give to get it.

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It also means knowing who you are negotiating with and what areas they might be willing to compromise on. You should also know what your “bottom line” is. By “bottom line” I mean what is the most you are willing to give up to get what you want.

For instance, several years ago, I decided it was time to get a newer car. I say newer because I wanted a “new to me” car, not a brand new car. I did my research and figured out what type of car I wanted. I decided on what must-have items on the car I wanted, the highest amount of miles that would already be on it, the colors I was willing to get it in, and the highest amount of money I was willing to pay.

After visiting numerous car dealerships I was able to negotiate buying a car. I knew what I was willing to give up (amount of money) and what I was willing to accept, things like the color, amount of miles, etc. I came prepared. This is critical.

2. Clear Communication

The next key skill you need to be an effective negotiator is clear communication. You have to be able to clearly articulate what you want to the other party. This means both clear verbal and written communication.

If you can’t clearly tell the other person what you want, how do you expect to get it? Have you ever worked through something with a vendor or someone else only to learn of a surprise right at the end that wasn’t talked about before? This is not what you would call clear communication. It’s essential to be able to share a coherent and logical vision with the person you are working with.

3. Active Listening

Let’s do a quick review of active listening. This is when you are completely focused on the speaker, understand their message, comprehend the information, and respond appropriately. This is a necessary ingredient to be able to negotiate successfully. You must be able to fully focus on the other person’s wants to completely understand them.

If you aren’t giving them your full attention, you may miss some major points or details. This leads to frustration down the road on both sides. Ensure you are employing your active listening skills when in arbitration mode.

4. Teamwork and Collaboration

To be able to get to a place of common ground and a win-win scenario, you have to have a sense of teamwork and collaboration.

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If you are only thinking about yourself and what you want without giving much care to what the other person is wanting, you are bound to wind up without a solution. The other person may get frustrated and give up if they see you are unwilling to meet them halfway or care little for what they want.

When you collaborate, you are working together to help each other get what is most important to you. The other upside to negotiating with a sense of teamwork and collaboration is that it helps create a sense of trust, which, in turn, helps provide positive energy for working to a successful conclusion.

5. Problem Solving

Problem-solving is another key negotiation skill. When you are working with the other person to get the deal done many times you’ll face new challenges along the way.

Maybe you want a new vendor to provide training on the software they are selling you but they say it’s going to cost an additional $20,000 to provide this service. If you don’t have the additional $20,000 in the budget to spend on the software but you feel the training is critical, how are you going to solve that problem?

From what I’ve seen, most vendors aren’t willing to provide additional services without getting paid for them. This is where problem-solving skills will help continue the discussions. You might suggest to the vendor that your company will also be looking to replace their financial software next year, and you’d be happy to ensure they get one of the first seats at the table when the time comes if they could perhaps lower the pricing on their training.

There’s a solution to most challenges, but it takes problem-solving skills to work through them effectively.

6. Decision-Making Ability

Finally, having strong decision-making ability will help you seal the deal when you get to a place where everyone feels like they are getting what works for them. Each step of the way you can cross off the list when you get what you are looking for and decide to move onto the next item. Then, once you have all of your must-have boxes checked and the other side feels good about things, it’s time to shake hands and sign on the dotted line. Powerful decision-making ability will help you get to the finish line together.

Conclusion

There you have it, 6 effective negotiation skills to master to lead a more fulfilling life. Once we realize that we negotiate in one form or another almost every day in every phase of our lives, we realize how critical a skill it is.

Possessing strong negotiation skills will help you in nearly every one of your relationships at both the workplace and in your personal life. If you feel your arbitration tools could use some sharpening, try some of the 6 effective negotiation skills to master that we’ve talked about.

More Tips to Improve Your Negotiation Skills

Featured photo credit: Windows via unsplash.com

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