How To Improve Your Business Meetings
COVID 19 unfortunately has increased the number of virtual meetings that businesses are conducting. We understand that companies are only trying to protect their employees from potentially being infected, but in lieu of all of the commotion, working remotely seems to be the popular outcome. Either they are conducting virtual meetings among their own employees and out of state and country scheduled interactions have been nearly impossible, and the only way to keep business flowing is to adapt. By providing other businesses and business partners with a virtual meeting, it is actually reducing the carbon footprint, the cost of plane tickets, and other travel arrangements. So, why not? Hosting virtual events and meetings may really help your professional business.
There are a lot of opportunities offered when it comes to virtual meeting technology. Choosing the right technology for your business needs can be very difficult. One thing is for sure though, you will need video conferencing for your company to survive.
Types of Virtual Events
Lasting anywhere from 45 to 90 minutes, webinars are a great option because attendees can join from anywhere around the world to listen and view the “presented content” from one or more speakers. Businesses usually conduct webinars through video conferencing tools that offer a “Q & A”, and can be live or pre-recorded for convenience. Webinars usually achieve 100% virtual attendance!
These conferences, although very complex due to their nature, the planning involved, and what the agenda will be, are more interactive and help attendees to get all of the information that they were looking for.
Internal Hybrid Events:
These types of events are usually sales kick-offs, a company-wide event, company training, and specialized department meetings (like the sales department). Hybrid events help those businesses that have more than one location and need to get the message across to them all in a timely matter. This option makes it a lot easier and more accessible to your employees. It could get expensive trying to fly your employees to headquarters.
External Hybrid Events:
On the opposite side of things, there are also external hybrid events that are an option for larger companies that have distributors and dealers that need to attend. These other partnered companies generally do not live where the business is headquartered but need access to the information. Events like these are for industry and user conferences. The biggest reward for these types of events is that those who are unable to travel to the location are still provided with full access. The only downfall is that it clearly is much more difficult for attendees to network and socialize among the other event attendees.
What Goes Into The Perfect Conference Room?
1. Video Displays:
The reason that video displays made it to the top of the list is due to its reigning importance. If you want to successfully connect people over video chat and screen share, you will need a quality display.
Take into consideration the actual display size of the monitor, the type of display (LED (Light Emitting Diode), LCD (Liquid Crystal Display), or even a projector), and mounting height.
Let’s begin with the TV size first. Generally, the screen size rule is, you need a diagonal screen sized to about half the length of the room.
For seating 8-10 people, you’ll need a room length of about 16 feet to successfully seat everyone comfortably.
But with this size of a room, the screen needs to be quite large. It ends up being about a 96-inch screen T.V. With this size of a screen, it’s relatively expensive and it may not be within the company’s budget. The next best size would be a 60-inch screen, or even better, a projection screen. Fortunately, the prices of big T.V.s have gone down significantly.
A projection system would be the best and most cost-effective choice (at the end) if the screen needs to be over 60 inches. Projectors are a great alternative because they are easily adjusted when it comes to the projection size. Items that normally seem hard to clearly see such as an Excel Spreadsheet can even be adjusted effectively.
Although there are some disadvantages to having a projector in your conference room; the first is the lighting of the room, for these screens it usually has to be a lot dimmer to see everything clearly. You may even have employees falling asleep because it’s darker. Projectors are also an investment of their own. The screen and monitor aren’t exactly cheap but most say that it is worth it in the end.
Mounting height is an extremely important thing to consider while hanging your screen. If you use your T.V. often for video-conferencing, hanging your T.V. at just the right height will give you and the people on the other side of the screen that “eye contact” feel. In most cases, hang it at eye-level. The height also has to do with where you place the camera and if it’s in the right position. With the smaller screens, you can get away with placing the camera on top, but with the bigger ones, you most likely will have them positioned below the T.V.
2. Video Conferencing Tech
This type of technology has increased in popularity drastically during 2020 and making sure that you purchase the best tech (with so many choices out there), can be difficult. What kind of business you are will help you to determine which software is best for you. However, be sure to also consider the scalability and security of the system.
So how will you be using video-conferencing for your business? Will it be for weekly team meetings? Do you have a small or large team? Also, will you be hosting webinars? These are all valuable questions to consider because this how you will find the perfect video software (with all of the right features) that your business needs.
Common features to look for are recording capabilities, high-level interaction, (sometimes) if it is mobile experience enabled, has the ability to handle a large number of participants while obtaining high video quality, meeting duration limitations, and screen sharing. Also, be sure to check out how user-friendly and easy to use it is. Ideally, you’ll want all of the other end-users to be able to download the application and join any of your virtual meetings. It is even more important for those of you who are doing webinars or product demonstrations.
Common video conferencing options are Zoom, Microsoft teams, Google Meet, and GoToMeeting.
3. The Camera
Having a camera is definitely a necessity. You may have a lower grade web-camera that helps you out in those smaller meeting rooms or you may need a higher-quality more functional camera for that large conference room in your office. When it comes to where a camera is placed, you have to think about the room lighting too. If you aren’t in a well-lit room, the video experience will suffer. There are a few things that you can do to avoid simple lighting issues; avoid having only one light-source on one side of the room --- resulting in a half-lit face or focus. Also, avoid lighting coming from behind the place/person of focus, it will make an unwanted dark silhouette.
4. The Control Panel
A control panel isn’t necessary but it can make your experience with video-conferencing a lot more convenient for anyone in the office wanting to conduct a virtual meeting. Using a control panel will make all of those virtual meetings easier to organize and conduct. A panel gives you access to all of the conference functions and lets you connect and share screens with a simple click of a button.
TruAudio iPad Mounts
Already have an iPad you can use for your system, no problem! Get it mounted and then it will be a great control panel for the room.
5. Audio - Microphones, Speakers, and Amplifier
Last but certainly not least, the room speakers and microphones included in the audio system are crucial to your meeting room. Fortunately for you, mics and speakers are functional and easy to position in the room. They can be on a table, under the T.V. screen/display with a soundbar, or even in-ceiling out of the way. Generally, what type of audio tech you use depends on the room size and the average number of people who will be in the room regularly for meetings. Soundbars are popular for most smaller rooms and they are easy to control. But those bigger conference rooms often require multiple speakers and microphones.
TruAudio Custom Soundbars
TruAudio offers some of the coolest options for a soundbar. It can be sized perfectly to blend in with your T.V., plated in silver or even gold, engraved, with a slim profile, whatever you want! Luckily for those that require a cleanroom aesthetic, the soundbar will fit perfectly in your conference room and will hardly be noticed, except for the awesome amplified sound coming from it.
TruAudio In-Ceiling Speakers
Do you have a larger room and want the sound to be evenly distributed? In-ceiling speakers are the way to go. They are definitely hard to see but offer great sound distribution and they even have paintable grills to match the color of your ceiling.
One of the most important things in the whole room will be the amplifier. Luckily, VSSL has the perfect system that is easily controllable via your mobile device and doesn’t require any special app, just the music app or music downloaded onto your device. It is extremely easy to use and when preparing for a meeting the last thing that you want to do is mess with the controls and volume and connection to the rest of your sound system in the business room. With VSSL, make sure it is turned on (via your phone) and adjust the volume accordingly. VSSL units are multi-functional and they have more options for bigger companies. If you have more than one meeting room then you will probably want to get an A.3 (3 different audio zones). VSSL also comes in 6-zone and if you only need one room - 1-zone.
If you need more information than this article could supply or maybe you need a good resource to help you with designing and updating your current meeting room? Click here and we will find a dealer near you who can help you find quality products that will fit your business needs.