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10 Rules for Video Conferencing Every Professional Should Know

In a time where video conferencing is not only becoming more commonplace, but necessary with the current virus pandemic it is important to know how to not only conduct yourself professionally but also take into consideration key factors in hosting efficient collaborations.

How you conduct yourself in meetings can leave a lasting impression and can have a positive impact on driving productivity. Let’s look at 10 rules to consider when hosting your next web conference.

1. Prepare a Strong Meeting Agenda

Having an agenda prepared and sent out before the meeting will ensure everyone can be prepared, be efficient and stay on track. A strong facilitator should lead the meeting to bring the conversation back on track should it waiver, and coordinate a time to follow up with additional points to be taken off line.

2. Send out meeting requests well in advance

By either using your preferred conference software, such as Zoom or Goto Meeting; or by email, make sure your participants have ample time to accept or defer meetings based on their schedule. Ideally, this should be 48 hours in advance giving all involved ample time to prepare.

2. General Housekeeping

Make sure your meeting space is tidy, and free from distractions. If working from home, try to place your camera in a position with a neutral or uncluttered background. If others are present in your home or immediate vicinity be sure to advise them to keep noise to a minimum.

4. Be aware of your Staging

If you are conducting a group webcam meeting, ensure all chairs are at an even height and all participants’ faces can be seen and directed towards the camera. If you are using a laptop, try to ensure that you are facing the webcam directly, rather than it pointing up or down at you. You may have to adjust your seat accordingly. Try to maintain a distance away from your camera, so you appear less distorted but aren’t too far away and hard to see.

5. Be on Time

You don’t want to waste any other participants time by not being punctual, and as a leader it is even more important to start the meeting slightly ahead of the others to ensure no technical issues arise.

6. Put your phone away

Just as in regular meetings, it is incredibly rude for participants to be texting or looking at the phone and not giving your attention to the individual currently speaking. Try to put your phone on silent, and only answer a call if it is necessary.

If others are waiting on you to complete your call, it not only causes disruption but also loss of time, money and productivity as participants start to talk about other things and lose focus.

7. Be aware of Meeting Etiquette

As a meeting presenter it may be of benefit to send out a general list of meeting etiquette rules for all participants representing your organization. This may include dressing appropriately, muting your microphone when not speaking, coughing or sneezing; and turning off the video feed when leaving the meeting. Every participant should treat the conference as if they are meeting face to face.

We have created an info graphic you can distribute to your team. You can find it here.

8. Eating and Drinking

Having your morning coffee in any meeting should be acceptable, but try to refrain from eating. It doesn’t read well on a webcam, looks unprofessional, is distracting and can be noisy, especially if you are wearing a headset. Even gamers despise this, let alone industry professionals!

9. Make Introductions

Make sure everyone in the room is introduced, and that late comers are also acknowledged to the rest of the group when entering the session. Some professionals like to introduce themselves in alphabetical order, which tends to be a practical approach.

10. Unwritten Speaking Rules

It is not polite to interrupt others as they are speaking, but sometimes this is necessary in order to get a chance to speak at all. As the facilitator, ensure that there is an opportunity for everyone in the room to speak and that the conversation is not dominated by one party.

Whilst this unwritten rule is true for all meetings, this is especially important with video conferences, as it is impossible to hear multiple participants with lag and less than optimal audio.

Bonus Rule!

Set an Example

Some Managers may presume that their position entitles them to break or not adhere to some of the rules. In reality, the opposite holds even more true. Managers and meeting facilitators are expected to have a level of professionalism above all else and should set a high standard that others can also follow.

It is important to practice what we preach.

If you require any assistance with any video conferencing peripherals, hardware or installation contact our Hotline on 1300 439 246 or view some of our current packages here.

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Benefits of Digital Signage in Real Estate

Modernise the face of your business.

Your consumers use technology everyday, and attention spans are very limited. Website bounce rates are higher than ever, and the way we consume content has changed in the last 10 years, yet most real estate agents still rely on filling their shopfront with small placards of available properties to increase sales.

What’s working?

Placards still have benefits in that they are still useful for social proof of sold properties, or displaying how many homes a real estate agency is managing, conveying popularity of the agency. They provide some detailed information about specific properties which can be useful to someone in the market for a home or rental.

How can we improve our signage?

Information displayed on placards are only catering for individuals who are on the street and actively looking for a property at the agent. Another way of saying this, is that the signage is actively targeting customers at a particular stage in the buying funnel.

The best use of digital signage, is to utilise the large form factor and motion and using it to attract potential customers to your agency. This can create a large point of difference, especially when there are other real estate competitors in the same location.

What can we use for content?

Real Estate agencies spend a large portion of their marketing budget on photography and videography for their properties and quite often have existing material from the marketing departments. This is a huge opportunity to leverage the existing artwork, display promotions, showcase hero photos and impressive properties.

Agencies can also elect to share some screen time for local initiatives and promote their local community, including schools. This shows connection, goodwill and gives prospective buyers an idea about the local area they may be buying in to.

All business owners can really utilise their shopfront as a medium for powerful marketing messages. With digital signage, the possibilities are endless which is why it is no surprise that signage can increase traffic as much as 33%.

How can we help?

We can support any Melbourne business by choosing the most effective signage, and setting up easy to use platforms to instantly manage content from anywhere in the world. We can optimise existing content and assets to fit your screens, and even create custom video help showcase your content professionally.

We offer ongoing support, maintenance and management plans to ensure your digital signage is operating efficiently with minimal downtime. This will enable you to focus of what you do best, and have piece on mind that your signage and platforms are taken care of.

I’m interested. How can we discuss this further?

We can arrange a consultation to discuss your unique requirements, and come up with a specific proposal in line with your marketing objectives and budget for your project.

Please call us on 1300 439 246 to arrange a discussion.

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CommBox VS ClassMate. What’s the difference?

Are you looking for a quick comparison between the CommBox and ClassMate range? In this article, we’ll cover the touch technology used, LCD type, glass used, lifespan and frame.

Touch Technology

The ClassMate Solutions touchscreens feature infrared touch technology (also known as IR). It works by embedding LED lights and sensors into the bezel of the touchscreens. These LED’s beam a signal across to the corresponding sensor, forming an invisible grid. When the grid is broken by a finger, or other solid object, the sensors detect the touchpoint. CommBox uses optics vs. the older style IR blocking. Optics provide a faster, more accurate, and much more natural handwriting experience.

LCD Type

ClassMate Touchscreens incorporate an open cell LCD. Open Cell LCDs have two components, the glass, and back-light and timing board. These two components are purchased separately and assembled in the ClassMate Solutions Factory. The CommBox Touchscreens boast a Module LCD, these are the highest-grade LCDs on the market and are available from LG or Samsung only. CommBox are the only brand, except for the Microsoft Surface Hub, to feature these LCDs. You will experience a better-quality image and can expect a longer lifespan.

LED Glass

CommBox features a higher grade, more effective, scratch resistant, acid-washed, anti-glare glass. The ClassMate has a lesser quality spray adhesive anti-glare glass.

Lifespan

CommBox Touchscreens have a longer lifespan due to their superior LCD type. CommBox touchscreens have a documented lifespan of 50,000 hours whilst the ClassMate range has around 30,000 hours.

Frame

While similar to the naked eye, anodised aluminium, which CommBox offers, has no risk of fading or chalking compared to the painted steel of the ClassMate range.

 

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Interactive Whiteboard Vs Interactive Flat Panel Display – A Comparison

Why are schools and businesses around the world upgrading their old systems, such as standard and Electronic Whiteboards to new Interactive Displays?

For some time now, interactive whiteboards have been having a positive impact on training which has been recognised in the teaching community worldwide. When introduced, they were cutting edge technology which allowed students and teachers to collaborate. In our fast-paced world, more advanced and efficient technology emerges at affordable price points quickly. 

Today we’re here to compare two technologies by giving you 5 reasons why it would be beneficial to upgrade your old technology, or even consider purchasing an Interactive Flat Panel Display (IFPD) over existing Interactive Whiteboard technology.

Reason 1: Reduce Multiple Systems and Maintenance

External projectors and screens over time may experience calibration issues, need bulb replacements and other maintenance such as filter cleaning which can cause downtime and disruption to businesses and schools.

LEDs provide much better viewing than projectors in different lighting conditions and have no maintenance requirements at all. Interactive Displays can be installed permanently hiding cables or can be moved when mounted on a trolley without recalibration to share the experience when required. The life time costs are quite often less expensive than their projector counterparts.

Reason 2: Limited Functionality

Some existing solutions such as projectors and electronic whiteboards are tailored to very specific functions, such as sharing lecture notes and some are only capable of limited bundled software. Electronic Whiteboards are a fantastic solution if you only require a specific function, however some models can be limited if you are looking for something with unlimited integration and capability.

With Interactive Displays, the real power comes from pairing with a small form factor integrated PC – these are connected and hidden behind the screens themselves, creating a seamless look which can still be a mobile solution. You can also cast from other devices to these displays and retain 2-way touch screen functionality. This means any media source, particularly PC computers can be utilised to run any current software without the need for any changes to the base system. The options are endless in terms of software packages available.

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Interactive Whiteboard – Washed Out Colours in Daylight, Shadowing, Multiple Components. Image Credit: Tomasz Mikołajczyk, via PixaBay

Reason 3: Impacts on Training

Projector systems dim over time, and trainers have to close blinds and turn downlights creating eye strain, lack of concentration and a non-optimal working environment. On top of this, teachers are dealing with light projected in their eyes whilst student views are obstructed by the shadows being cast from the teacher, which is distracting for everyone at best. 

Not to mention, they can be noisy, the picture can vibrate when there is movement in the room and they can be awkward to relocate, setup again and re-calibrate (which is necessary even when not moving them). Projector maintenance causes downtime, which has an impact on delivering further tuition and training.

Reason 4: Your student’s home has better technology than your workplace

This is a harsh truth, but some workplaces and classrooms don’t want to give up old technology and are holding their students and employees back. Children and Workers now have access to touch screen technology and collaborative workspaces in the home and can often feel at a disadvantage in the workplace. We want to share our lectures with our colleagues, students and their parents so that the education and collaboration can continue on after the lessons.

For example, it may take more time to annotate documents by using text and drawing tools in software. Most often than not, it’s much quicker and easier to mark on or sign documents using a stylus. People love being more connected to their technology; it’s this tactile experience which keeps us motivated and engaged.

Schools and Businesses are now realising the benefits and are making the change to adapt to this new technology.

Reason 5: Affordability

Touch Screens are now dropping in price to become more affordable and viable as a solution for both schools and businesses. Additionally, they are more cost effective to run on a daily basis than old projector technology.

Financing options are available to all schools and businesses to make upgrading to new technology a cost-effective solution.

In Conclusion...

Interactive Displays are capable of running the Windows 10 operating system, which is currently the market leader with Touch, Windows Ink and Active Pen technology integrated from the get-go. Windows gives you access to all your favourite applications which have already been upgraded to support touch technology.

Touch Screens are everywhere. In popular restaurants, kiosks in shopping centres and in your hand.

For the best deals and service on Interactive Flat Panel Displays, see our special offers today.