Web Meetings and Industry
When an industry leader, say a giant car manufacturer, holds a workshop or seminar for engineers / developers, do they need to come in, hundreds of them on planes from all over? Do companies actually have that kind of budget in a time when people are actually losing their jobs?
At boardrooms across the world seminars, meetings and conferences are being given a re-thought. How many of these actually need to have people travel from all corners of the country or world and need to be sitting together in a room?
Even if some people are required to be physically present, how about others whose contribution to a meeting might be short and needed only a few minutes or hours of the time?
What will it be like to have the large sum that was spent over the year on travel, mentioned at a shareholders' meeting? In the age of government bailouts, productivity and cost savings are everything.
With modern technology these days web meetings have the answer to all of these situations. Done on the web and done right, a Seminar can be replaced by a Webinar at much less costs and waste of precious time.
Anyone responsible at a business for arranging meetings etc. needs to ask themselves how much interaction is really needed at these get-togethers. If there is just a little interaction that's needed, a webcast may do.
If all that is needed to be done is something like to present a balance sheet to the members of the board, a webcast may be fine. If there a certain amount of interaction that's needed though, a Webinar may be a good idea.
A Webinar is a form of Web meeting that works best when there is a moderator between the audience and the presenter. The presenter comes up with their PowerPoint presentations, slides and such.
When there are questions from the audience, a moderator takes care of organizing things.
If a lot of interaction is needed though, full-blown web meetings is the only way to go. If you need an analogy to understand how this might work, you could think of a conference call, only with far better functionality.
When there is actual collaborating called for, with equal amounts of input from everyone, a proper Web meeting is the thing.
Companies like Cisco, HP and Citrix are great with software for web meetings. Whichever method you choose, you have to keep in mind that it's often easy to get the technology mixed up with the use obtained from it.
You still need to make sure that excellent meeting practices are followed. You still need an agenda and to need to make sure that the message originally intended, is closely adhered to.
Remember, if it seems like Web meetings are taking quality away from the interaction that was once possible in face-to-face meetings, software and the Internet together make repeated daily meetings possible that once were not.
Technology does make new things possible that once were not.