Video conferencing is essentially a telephone conference incorporating video so that you can ‘See who you are talking to’ in real time.
As a mode of communication Video conferencing is still growing in popularity. There are various reasons for this amongst which are the corporate drive to reduce travel expenditure and reduce unproductive time out of the office. Corporate energy managers are often supporters as it helps to reduce carbon footprints associated with travel.
Like most technology the quality of video conferencing has been influenced by the budget that you have available and there is much to know in assembling the necessary equipment, décor and lighting. So specialist contractors have sprung up to support demand.
There are numerous technological solutions available and you can use web based applications also. However, unsurprisingly web based solutions do depend on the quality and reliability of your internet connection.
Video conferencing is a useful alternative to ‘Face to face’ meetings. Members of our team who have used it agree that it cannot replace meeting people in person completely. 60% of communication is non-verbal. It is better than a telephone call and it is useful depending on the type of meeting you have arranged. However, there are some things that need to be discussed in person, particularly sensitive discussions or where direct feedback is required.
We have conducted the same training both in-person and by video conferencing and we all agreed that the in-person training was much better largely because we were more able to ‘Read the room’ and because people were more open and comfortable to ask questions and give direct feedback.
Therefore, video conferencing is a useful addition to your communications armoury, can reduce travel costs and make regular catch -up meetings easier. However, it will not enable you to replace direct ‘Face to face’ meetings completely, although if desirable you may be able to reduce them.