Body Language

My longtime friend and brilliant management consultant John Parikhal reminds me that research done in the 1960s demonstrates that communication is 55% body language, 38% tone and only 7% words.

  • The phone gives tone which is why it is more communicative. You also have to pay more attention when someone is speaking or you don’t know what they say.
  • The tricky place is body language — in theory, Zoom should give us lots of that. But since most people sit still, and you only see them from the shoulders up, we rarely get good body language on Zoom so it isn’t such a great form of communication either.

It’s not just one thing – texts don’t do it, Zoom fails the test and even talking on the phone is only one aspect of effective communication.