Face To Face Time

In the digital age, effective face-to- face communication in an organisation is still vital to successful working practices.

With the rise of smartphones, tablets, twitter, LinkedIn and the virtual office we are often told that we are the most connected, collaborative society of all time.  However, these days we may find that our festive getaway is not quite as ‘away from it all’ as we had hoped. Whether it’s at home or on the ski slopes, the company BlackBerry means that work is probably never far away. Being switched on 24/7 is meant to get the best of us – we can work anywhere, anytime – but is there a better way of working jointly?  In this age of social networking are we ignoring the human touch and so ignoring a crucial element of collaboration?

As much as we would like to think that we are all successful team players able to make any project work, there are occasions when collaborative projects go wrong.  When we at CEDR surveyed 2,000 workers this year about their attitudes to collaboration, over a third gave a “lack of communication” as the main reason for why office teamwork fails, closely followed by the complaint of poor direction from management.  Our research shows that whatever the cause of the poor teamwork it is likely to manifest itself as frustration and lead to further deterioration of relationships at work.

Does work suffer when we hide behind technology?

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By Karl Mackie

Dr. Karl Mackie a mediator and Chief Executive for The Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (CEDR).