The way technology have transformed our lives is still unbelievable. Life has become much easier like never before with the advent of smart phones and high-end networking facilities. Instant communication, routing a location, finding restaurants, organizing a party, shopping, conducting events, are few of many features which smart phones offer people. Let’s see how the technology era would reflect on the future meetings.
Every organization conducts meetings at different times each year. The prime purpose of conducting meetings are; sharing information, generating ideas, evaluating options and making final decisions. In a recent study on the event industry, it was reported that within 5 years, 20% of all meetings will be virtual. Webinars and virtual conferences have become quite popular within a short span of time. There are times when all your core members can’t attend the meeting especially when they are at different locations. The schedules and travel funds seem to be so tight that all of the participants would be able to attend the meeting at a particular venue. Now that you can leverage technology to schedule a virtual meeting, it promotes free flow of communication among all the participants at the same time, cuts the need for being physically present. The amount which you save on your budget is also quite exciting if you are conducting virtual meetings.
Preparation And Communication
Preparation and communication are two vital factors in virtual meetings. During a virtual meeting you won’t be able to hand out materials, therefore you need to plan well in advance and provide all necessary documentation like Fax or Email to the participants before the meeting gets started. Apart from that during a virtual meeting there is a tendency to lose all nonverbal communication as you are not seeing every participant in person. Sometimes you won’t be able to understand the tone of the participants or their body language. All such communication issues should be addressed by clearly discussing them at the start of your session. There are different options for virtual meetings as well like conference calling, video conferencing and instant messaging. You can choose it based on your requirement and objective of the meeting.
Will Online Media Skim Out Print Media?
Though research reports point out that virtual meeting may increase up to 20 per cent, but there is no chance for it to rise more than that. For instance, consider the example of online media and print media, though many feared that online media will kill print media, but the circulation of newspapers never got affected. You can notice that every month, a new magazine is released. Virtual meetings are conducted according to the situation. Sometimes a virtual meeting will be more relevant, at times you may require face to face communication and occasionally even a combination of both will offer the best solution. However the choice is up to you, you can decide how you want it to be.
Wireless Technology Take Meetings Further
Wireless connectivity has overshadowed the need for overhead projector. A recent study conducted by Intel points out that wireless users were able to complete 52 more minutes per week of connected activities during meetings compared to wired users, thereby increasing their productivity. Nowadays there is an arising trend is to make people engaged even before the meeting by making announcements. This is an era when corporations require executives and staff to get their work done even when they are in meetings. There was a time when it was considered a taboo when the participants check their mobile phones during a meeting. Now things have changed delegates make tweets during the session and actively participates in the so called “backchannel discussion.”
Making use of technology for meeting promote active participation and interaction among participants. Today while meetings are conducted, texting facility is opened for the participants during the entire forum so that they can ask any question any time. All their queries, comments and suggestions will be covered during the discussion. In certain meetings, the delegates are even provided with a built-in mic which has high quality sound so that everyone could hear the person speaking. They even offer the ability to have only one microphone enabled at a time to ensure that there are no disruptions and prevent people talking at the same time.
By effectively using all such technologies, a meeting planner will be able to attain promising results. This is because it enables them to conduct a cost effective meeting and gather valuable feedback. It will also open up way for new, exciting ideas which can be developed in the future. Technology is thereby slowly taking off the concept of meetings to a next level. It is extending meetings far beyond the four walls and breaking up all physical boundaries.