Even a small local business can have big needs, even global needs, in terms of supply chain, staffing, sales, and other departments. Meeting these needs in a cost-effective and creative way can expand your reach and enhance communications between your far-flung staff, suppliers, and contractors. Using cloud supported video meetings to meet these needs is a great way to bring everyone one into the room.
Meetings Are Great!
There are a lot of things to like about meetings that everyone can agree on. Meeting and networking with colleagues, brainstorming new ideas, fixing problems, and contributing to the culture and success of the company. A Verizon study recently pointed out how much people like meetings. Among bust professionals responding to the survey, over 90 percent placed a high value on meetings, with the study linking successful, productive meetings to job engagement and satisfaction. Great news! Especially in light of Gallup’s shocking poll showing a high rate of disengagement among the most experienced and educated workers in age from 30 to 64. These are your prime workforce, and losing them to zombification is a loss for your organization and your bottom line. Breaking the trend of disengagement requires using methods that bring people into the loop, and heighten interactions with other staff. More than that, re-engaging workers means meaningful, productive, satisfying interactions. Making a group of people into a team means more than just sticking everyone on a conference call.
Not So Great News
Before you decide to throw a parade of meetings, you might need to hear a little about the rest of the survey’s findings, too. Some of the findings are not so wonderful, but some are very much expected in light of the meeting culture that has grown up in a corporate culture that seems to value motion and sound over meaningful progress.
- Respondents attended an average of 60 meetings per month, and an average of 37 percent of working hours was spent in meetings.
- Even with all those meetings, respondents noted that they cannot attend all the meetings to which they are invited.
- Preparation matters. Respondents characterized about the right amount of time to prepare for a meeting as about an hour for a meeting they termed as highly productive, versus half that for a meeting that was not at all or not very productive.
- When traveling to attend meetings, professionals primary stressors were being absent from family and disruption of the work flow, leaving to a backlog at the office.
- Over nine in ten admit to daydreaming in meetings, and nearly four in ten have actually had a snooze.
A heavy load of work and meetings might best be compared to an endurance event rather than work.
Make Meetings Matter
Making a meeting productive in one room can be hard to do, but making that meeting matter when you have geographically diverse teams and personnel can make even the most seasoned meeting holder want to hide under the desk with a waste bin over their head. Fortunately, there are answers that can address disparate devices, low bandwidth, sharing documents, meeting security, and other concerns. Cloud based apps such as Bluejeans are growing in popularity over expensive hardware based systems simply because they are scalable, flexible, and user-friendly. In fact, according to IDC, solutions like video conferencing with Blue Jeans network are taking a big fat bite out of companies like Cisco and Polycom. Large, expensive, high maintenance systems are being phased out and sales are falling steadily as cloud based options that can deliver HD video and sound enter the global marketplace.
Opening up to the world of video meetings in the cloud can also mean fresher meetings. When you don’t have to go back to the hotel, have dinner, sleep, and catch a plane home, the decisions reached in meetings are implemented fresh out of the box. The meeting is freshly in mind, and with better cloud apps, available for download and perusal. Documents are shared in app, and available from individual laptops or tablets, so nothing is lost or misplaced. The information and impressions are in top of mind with none of the fall off that a trip or even a commute can cause.
Collaborating globally means adjustments for your end and theirs. Languages, cultural, and technological differences may be more easily worked around when participants can see each other face to face in real time. While telephone calls, emails, and text chats might work for some things, the largest part of communication is still taken from nonverbal cues such as expression and stance. Using video meetings to open up these lines of communication can show positive results when team members can see and interact with each other either one on one, or group to group.