5 steps to better virtual meetings

There’s no question that virtual meetings bring people together, speed up decision making, and save money. Today’s virtual meetings let customers connect with your experts despite distance and help you feel like you’re in the same room as colleagues from around the world. Here are five ways to make your virtual meetings more productive and impactful.
More than two-thirds of business professionals engage in virtual work.
— “It’s Unclearly Defined, but Telecommuting Is Fast on the Rise,” New York Times , Mar. 2014.
1. Be authentic.
Technology makes it easier to connect with others no matter the distance. But it can also feel like a barrier when it comes to building interpersonal relationships. The key is to invest a bit of time and treat people like actual people, not just voices or faces on a screen.
You’ll get more participation if you follow these guidelines:
  • Greet each participant as they enter the meeting.
  • Ask about their weekend or vacation plans.
  • Don’t mute your endpoint.
  • Avoid side conversations.
2. Put technology to work.
Look for collaboration solutions that are easy to use so you can focus on the meeting and not on the technology. Make sure face-to-face interaction is available through video—without it, you miss important parts of the conversation like facial expressions and nonverbal feedback.
The right way to use technology:
  • Use video so you can gauge reactions.
  • Share content like presentations or interactive whiteboards to engage participants.
  • Record meetings for people who can’t be there.
  • Ensure that people can join in from any device.
3. Communicate.
Meaningful communication can take many forms: one-to-one, team meetings, all-hands, and trainings. If you ask a question and hear crickets, change your tactics.
  • Address questions to specific people.
  • Encourage interaction.
  • Support two-way communication.
  • Discourage multitasking.
75% of users say video improves collaboration and productivity. — “Aiming to Increase UC Adoption? Look to Video,” Frost & Sullivan, 2014.
4. Play fair.
When the meetings are international, someone is invariably attending during off hours. Giving people the option to participate from home via video provides them the advantages and flexibility of a face-to-face connection.
  • Be sensitive to time zones so the same people don’t always have to work during off hours.
  • Make it possible for people to participate from anywhere and from any device. 
  • Allow everyone the opportunity to give feedback.
5. Follow virtual meeting etiquette.
Whether you’re collaborating from across the globe or just from across the office, video-enabled virtual meetings offer flexibility, consistency, and a higher level of cooperation. Think of them like traditional meetings with extra benefits.
  • Direct questions to people by name to cut confusion.
  • Use technology that can eliminate background noise.
  • Offer the flexibility that allows people to join from anywhere.
  • Use technology that helps identify who is speaking.
  • Use video for formal meetings and quick base touches
But remember that you’re talking to real people.

Don´t be a videot!

Make video conferencing great for all

Get tips from Polly Calm, the world’s expert in “vidiquette”

Polly Calm is here to teach others the fine art of “vidiquette”—etiquette for video—to make video conferencing a great experience. We use video every day, for virtually every meeting—and over the years we’ve learned a thing or two. What’s more, things we’ve learned about human nature have also made their way into our innovations that can help you avoid problems before they start. Although video has become mainstream—not everyone does it well. Polly’s mission is to encourage video conferencing utilization and adoption by demonstrating that video conferencing is not hard—and a few simple things can make it great.

See more on http://www.polycom.com/hd-video-conferencing/polly-calm-vidiquette.html


Whitepaper: Online Meeting and Video Conferencing Tools Offer a World of Opportunity for Sellers

From Cisco WebEx Web site

Sales professionals know that nothing is more effective than meeting in-person to explain the benefits of a product or service. But traveling to meet a prospect isn’t always an option.

Thankfully, you don’t have to hop on a plane to meet with customers face-to-face. More sellers are turning to video conferencing as a core tool for reaching potential buyers. While nothing beats an in-person session, sales teams are evolving to keep pace with competitors, respond to customers more quickly and gain better insight into prospects’ needs.

Video conferencing allows sellers to build stronger relationships, read body language and pick up on cues that they might miss over the phone. The ability to view documents, presentations and other content in real-time allows potential buyers to understand the value of what’s being sold. And the flexibility and immediacy of online meetings mean that both parties can connect in real-time, no matter where they are located.

Read our whitepaper with IDG, “Online Meeting and Video Conferencing Tools Offer a World of Opportunity for Sellers” to learn how top sales pros are using these tools to push prospects through the funnel, shorten the sales cycle and win customers.

11.0 Collaboration SRND

You can find the 11.0 Collaboration SRND as well as previous versions of the SRND at the SRND landing page:  http://www.cisco.com/go/ucsrnd

While updates to SRND content were made throughout the document, the following are some notable highlights:

·         Gateways chapter: New sections on Expressway Business to Business Communications and Cisco Unified Border Elements

·         Collaboration Endpoints and Mobile Collaboration chapters: Coverage for Cisco Spark and the Cisco Collaboration Cloud.

·         Cisco Rich Media Conferencing chapter: Extensive updates made throughout including incorporation of applicable content from the previous Cisco Collaboration Services chapter.

·         Bandwidth Management chapter: New chapter replacing the previous Call Admission Control chapter.  In addition to the previous Call Admission Control content, this chapter has been updated extensively to cover QoS and other bandwidth management considerations.

·         Emergency Service chapter: Updated to include coverage for Unified CM native emergency call routing.

·         Collaboration Instant Messaging and Presence: Extensive updates made throughout including incorporation of some content from the previous Cisco Collaboration Clients chapter.

·         Cisco Collaboration Clients and Cisco Collaboration Services chapters: Eliminated with pertinent content moved to Collaboration Endpoints, Rich Media Conferencing, and Collaboration Instant Messaging and Presence chapters.

Paras and Associates removes language barriers between patients and doctors

Successful small business Paras and Associates, in conjunction with the Healthcare Interpreter Network, provides a managed service to hospitals that removes language barriers and ensures understanding between patients and doctors through video interpretation. Cisco networking, video and customer collaboration solutions enable the quality and reliability needed for timely communication and patient care.