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Video Brings Us Closer, Improves Understanding
Videoconferencing is increasingly becoming part of the collaboration toolkit, with plenty of endpoint, software, and service choices available — as well as the ability to support video bandwidth requirements across the network. With neither technology nor bandwidth barriers, the choice of using videoconferencing often comes down to collaboration participants.
It’s taken a while for some users to get used to the video experience. But as we communicate more frequently across multiple time zones with associates, partners, and vendors, being able to see meeting participants can aid in understanding not only what a speaker is saying but how other participants are reacting to what’s being said.
Benefits of Videoconferencing
When participating in audioconferences, I often may be not able to tell if others on the line are focused on the conversation. Because I cannot see what they’re doing, I’m not sure if I have their attention. With videoconferencing, I can see whether someone is engaged, or instead is multitasking, focusing elsewhere in the room, typing, or otherwise not giving the meeting their full attention. When everybody can see each other, I find that attention increases, there’s a higher level of participation and interaction, and meetings can be more productive. In addition, I think videoconferencing increases the trust people have in what’s being communicated.
For remote workers, videoconferencing can reduce feelings of disconnectedness or underappreciation. Periodic videoconferencing, such as weekly team meetings, will help cement the efforts and achievements of participants, including remote workers. Videoconferencing helps remote project members stay in the loop rather than feeling like outsiders.
From today’s mobile devices, we can chat, send text messages, share screens, and decide whether an audio- or videoconference is the best mechanism to use for a conversation or meeting. Combining all this together in a unified communications app, we provide one interface that allows users to transition the media as appropriate without having to switch from one app to another. For example, a text chat among colleagues can seamlessly transition to a video call for a deeper conversation.
As more and more businesses embrace videoconferencing, this mode of communications will eventually equal and probably surpass audioconferencing in its use. Simply put, videoconferencing removes the visual barriers that hamper audioconferencing.