There’s an old saying among us weather-beaten sales people: “When I’m selling, I speak in your language; when I’m buying, you speak in mine.” In fact, that’s an interesting idea to keep in mind when conducting any business transaction. Consensus or agreement — getting to “yes” in any business communication — is a lot like sales. You have to speak the language of the person you want to convince.
When everyone is speaking the same verbal language, however, the way we’re really communicating is more physically nuanced, which means the visual component in communications becomes more important. In other words, when I’m selling to you, I’m going to want to see you.
That’s why video conferencing is becoming such an important part of commerce and communications. From the business-level packages available in Skype to the WebRTC approach in simple video conferencing applications like Google Hangouts, video is an increasingly commonplace way to do business.
Why is that? Think about how the word “yes” is used in conversation. When we’re speaking and I say “yes,” I might really mean “yes, I hear you,” rather than “yes, I agree with you.” That’s not readily obvious through audio alone.