COLLABORATION

5 tips for better online meetings that everyone can implement!

Feb 2019

An online meeting has so many limiting factors that it sometimes seems like a miracle that an interaction over IP can happen at all. Each one has their own theory as to why it doesn't really work with technology. In the following I would like to introduce five components that have a big influence on the meeting experience.

1.THE INTERNET CONNECTION

A reasonably fast Internet connection should not be underestimated as a quality feature. Although it is good to be able to work from anywhere today, we all know that the world does not consist of super fast, freely available Internet hotspots. And as practical as it may be to use your smartphone to connect to the Internet via your PC, even the best mobile phone hotspot cannot afford a 60-minute stable online conference with video and screenshare.

Tip: Before one freezes constantly on the screen as a grimace monster, it is best to either dial in only by phone or plan so far in advance that one has a reliable hotspot in a café, hotel or public building nearby. To do this, it is best to test the speed beforehand.

2. The Device

Nowadays you can invite any participant to video conferences and you are no longer restricted to a single device (e.g. using the Cisco Meeting Server). Everything is possible, e.g. dial-in from a mobile phone, laptop, telepresence system. However, depending on functionality and personal experience with the device, the online meeting can quickly become hectic, as when searching the Screenshare or "Mute" button. Nobody wants to be the person who thinks they're muted, but they've been running the whole conference for 2 minutes.

Tip: The end device should be adapted to the type of meeting. For an important interview with several participants, a telepresence system with very good video quality is better suited than the soft client on the laptop. In addition, you should familiarize yourself with an unknown system in advance, especially for important appointments, so that you can react quickly if necessary.

3. The Headset

Who doesn't know the question: "Hello...can you hear me?" Not too often it is due to bad or wrongly connected headphones. These can lead to noise, disturbing background noises or switching your own voice on and off.

Tip: Here the investment in a high-quality headset is worthwhile in any case, because knotted "web gift headphones" are often bad in sound and also appear unprofessional. Especially for professional use, there are various mid- to high-priced models for every purpose that can also be connected wirelessly to the end device.

4. THE VIDEO CAMERA

The quality of the video image is often related to the problem of the available bandwidth from point 1 and not necessarily to the camera itself. Nevertheless, HD cameras or video terminals are the best alternative for a professional online meeting and beat "standard cameras" built into laptops by far.

Tip: Here, too, it depends on what kind of meeting it is. The 08/15 cameras may be sufficient for everyday meetings. However, if it's an important customer meeting or the presentation of a creative project where you have to hold things in the camera, you should pay attention to sufficient bandwidth and high-resolution technology.

5. The User

Finally, the weakest link in the chain of unfortunate circumstances is certainly the user. Depending on the level of knowledge and technical talent, he is the decisive component in the Russian roulette of online meetings. Open left, press buttons, enter pin, plug in headset...all this may be a bit confusing for someone with little or no previous knowledge. Stress, time pressure, and a hectic environment can also affect concentration.

Tip: If you know that this is an important meeting, it's best to make sure you have the right hardware and bandwidth, plan a little more time for dialing in, test links and pins again if necessary, and ask a colleague for help if in doubt.

CONCLUSION:

The truth is, technology can only be as good as its environment allows it to be; i.e. if you don't rush it, use it properly, provide it with sufficient resources and create the right technological environment, you get a brilliant user experience. Often the blame is blamed too quickly on the software instead of taking time for optimal conditions. Because even the best software is not up to the inexperienced user with bad accessories.

In any case, Cisco, the market leader in collaboration technology, offers meeting software that could even operate your cat. We will provide you with a brilliant meeting experience and will be happy to advise you on equipment and network. More information can be found on our website www.cisco.de/einfachmeeting. You can also find your nearest Cisco partner on our website.

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COLLABORATION

5 tips for better online meetings that everyone can implement!

An online meeting has so many limiting factors that it sometimes seems like a miracle that an interaction over IP can happen at all.

Jan 2019