There are things we do because we have to and not because we want to, business meetings are one of them. Very few people, if any, enjoy business meetings. Most people prefer to either just go ahead and finish their assignments, or just do their own thing their own way instead of having to spend unnecessarily long hours either discussing trivial things or trying to make decisions about things that take forever. It is for this reason that technology is one of the biggest time savers in the corporate world. It may not necessarily take away meetings completely (albeit many wish it would), but it saves everyone time by reducing the amount of time spent in meetings or at least making the meeting more interesting and effective for the attendees. At least that way, meetings are tolerable. Let’s have a look at how technology is transforming business meetings in 2018.
Smart Meeting Rooms
We have smartphones, smart TVs, smart cars, and smart meeting rooms. What are smart meeting rooms? Smart meeting rooms are designed to save both time, energy and money. They incorporate various technologies to make meetings take less time to schedule, hold, and end.
Smart meeting rooms incorporate making use of apps that handle the scheduling of meetings such that those interested in conference rooms or boardrooms know when these rooms are available for the meetings. They may need a little extra work but the result is worth it. Those who regularly hold meetings provide their calendar to a scheduling app that will compare everyone’s calendar and determine the best time for groups to hold meetings based on when it will be the most ideal for them. This way, meetings will be held when people can actually attend and avoid unnecessary cancelations. In addition, other interested meeting holders will know when the meeting rooms are available in advance.
Conference technology has been around for a while now and it is advancing. Audio Visual technology enables the streaming of videos over long distances such that people don’t have to relocate to attend meetings. This saves both time and money. Video streaming technology is advancing and becoming smoother, more efficient, and more reliable such that meetings are held without glitches. With the introduction of Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality, we are heading toward a future where perhaps people will never have to relocate. All that will be needed is the VR headset and people will have meetings as if everyone was actually in the room.
Smart meeting rooms have sensors installed, that are connected to the lighting system of the room. Having the lights always on in the meeting room during the day or night is a waste of energy. The sensors are meant to detect the presence of people in the rooms such that the lights will go on when someone is in the room and will go off when they leave. This saves the time of having to switch on lights at the beginning of meetings and switching them off after the meeting is over. The same is partially integrated into some wall sockets to prevent any unnecessary power consumption by electronic devices, and to prevent any electrical damages.
Wireless Display Technology
Today, meeting rooms have various instruments for facilitating meetings like microphones, various display units, and alternative equipment that have cables running all over the place. These take time to set up and can be a disaster if one of them is the problem in the middle of a meeting. Sometimes you don’t know which cable is doing what or belongs to which device, and sometimes someone just steps on or trips over one of the cables and everything or something goes silent and no one knows what to do. Wireless displays are the solutions to this problem. They are easy to set up and save you from the mess, the cables make. Some solutions such as Airtame can help you stream your content to your guests or colleagues in the meeting. They may not get rid of all the cables but they will reduce the number of cables you have in the meeting room.
Everyone has a USB or thumb drive that they keep their official documents and any presentations they have prepared for meetings. They are reliable and portable and everyone loves them for these aspects. However, their portability is both a pro and a con. It is very easy to misplace a thumb drive, and it can be very painful if it happens on your way to making a presentation and all your original and well-refined ideas are in there. That is where cloud technology is more reliable. It is okay if you still want to save your work on thumb drives, but also save it in the cloud so that you can access it regardless of what happens. If your thumb drive somehow disappears, your work will still be safe in the cloud.
Furthermore, cloud technology offers complete office and conference packages. That means you can actually collaborate with people during meetings, do your work in the cloud, and present the finished results in meetings. Cloud technology is the most secure and reliable technology we have today.
These are just some of the ways you can improve the efficiency of business meetings. The technologies are not written in stone. As new technologies are introduced, we will have even better ways of holding meetings. Perhaps, at some point in the future, when we have found a way of merging consciousness, we will eliminate meetings all the same. However, that’s a far-fetched concept.