Imagine your company has a branch in San Francisco, one in Minneapolis, and one in Boston, MA. And, you need to meet together periodically to coordinate business plans. Flying everyone from Canton to Minneapolis for weekly meetings is not practical. How can you all meet together? Your business meeting solution is video conferencing!
Video conferencing between offices or with telecommuting employees is a great way to keep your company connected. 44% of businesses use video conferencing. Holding meetings this way has definite advantages over conference calls or instant messaging.
Video allows you to share slides and charts as well as see coworkers’ faces. 87% of employees in one survey reported feeling more connected to the business with the use of video conferencing.
When you hold a video conference, you should follow these tips for the best results:
Be familiar with your tools
Just because you have good video conferencing tools doesn’t mean you will have no worries. Learn how to use the software, how to best set up the VoIP system hardware, and how to use the various available options. Can everyone see and hear the conference from each location? Can you record the conference?
Check the lighting in your conference room, the speakers, and your internet connection before the meeting starts. Poor sound quality or a badly angled camera can harm the quality of the meeting for those joining from other locations.
Prepare for the meeting
These may seem like minor concerns but clutter, poor lighting, or other background issues can be very distracting to remote coworkers. In addition, it is important for the main presenter(s) to wear solid colored, attractive clothing. Wild or bold patterns as well as black, white, and red are distracting. Remember you will be on camera and so want to look professional.
Another element to look into is if each employee can easily sign up for or log in to the meeting. It can be really frustrating to be unable to participate based on a technical issue.
Meetings should be interesting. No one enjoys overly long meetings conducted in a monotone voice. Speak in an energetic way. Make sure everyone attending is introduced, then stick to a meeting plan. Avoid side conversations and complicated multi-tasking. It is difficult for long distance conference callers to follow the meeting with outside distractions. Make sure the meeting is interesting to encourage engagement from everyone involved.
Business meetings should be a time to share important information among colleagues. Video conferencing brings in a new element. Instead of having someone sitting next to you, they are in another location. With this in mind, be sure to include everyone in the conversation. Be considerate of time zones. Wait your turn to speak. Address individuals clearly. And avoid side conversations that include only a few employees.
Video conferencing allows you to connect with others in your company easily. This technology can bridge distances as well as make business meetings fun. Use this opportunity wisely by being lively and courteous. And of course use technology to its fullest so that each meeting is something to look forward to. Beacon Telecom can help you with your video conferencing solutions.