I am sure that every business owner looks forward to in-house meetings or meetings with clients, right? Often, that is not the case. Ever get the feeling that you’re wasting your and your employees’ time in business meetings?
If yes, then you’re not alone. Many times, business meetings become housekeeping lists, presentations on topics, with little interaction among employees. The good news is that there are some tech tools that you can harness to make the most of your limited—and valuable—time.
The Need for Advanced Communication Technology
Today, communication technology is advancing each day. In such times, no business can be successful until its improves its communication tools. By ensuring the flow of information, communication accelerates the rate of decision-making in an organization or business. Talking about communication, an increasingly popular trend in the business world is virtual meetings. To save time, many organizations and business owners are resorting to virtual meetings.
By making communication easy, technology is improving business meetings. Today, to communicate with employees, customers, suppliers and business partners, business owners/managers can use web-conferencing tools. These tools support video chat which allows both parties to see each other, making the communication real and effective. Participants will need to install web conference software on their devices before they can benefit from the virtual conferencing tools.
You can start holding/attending meetings via your smartphone after you download a virtual meeting mobile application: it’s as simple as that!
The Need for Business Meeting Tools
Raise your hand if you find business meetings a waste of time? If you did raise your hand then you’re not alone. According to a survey conducted by Harris Poll for Clarizen, 3 out 5 five employed adults in the United States spend more time preparing for a status meeting than attending the meeting itself. The results of the survey further revealed that about a third of the people attending meetings find them a waste of time and almost half of the respondents felt that watching paint dry or going to the DMV is more productive than sitting in a meeting.
The survey mentioned above isn’t the only study that puts forth the case for using tech tools in business meetings. Research by Bain Consulting, published in the Harvard Business Review, revealed a case where people at one company spent three hundred thousand hours a year either in or supporting the weekly executive committee meetings.
Keeping all of this in mind, it’s safe to say that tapping into the tech tools, apps and services that can save time by making meetings less frequent, less annoying and more efficient is beneficial for businesses. So, without further ado, let’s look at the 4 technology tools that can make your business meeting less frequent and more productive.
If you want to collaborate with your team to make awesome documents, then Google Docs is what you need. However, it is good for non-document purposes too. Your team can work all at once on forms, presentations, spreadsheets and more using Google Docs. Moreover, Google Docs allows you to leave yourselves a note for later or leave a note on someone else’s work to request a change.
Google Drive, a key feature of Google Docs, allows your team to set up your own file storage system. Also, keeping everything in one central location should not be a problem for you as you have 15 GB of free space available to you. Compared to using a flash drive or emailing documents back and forth, this is a far better system.
The repeated misplacement of his USB flash drive while he was a student at MIT, prompted Drew Houston, the co-founder of Dropbox, to develop the Dropbox concept. The recipient of many awards, Dropbox is a simple and easy to use file hosting service. Dropbox offers file synchronization and cloud storage. Moreover, it can house documents, photos and videos. As these materials will show up on all synced devices, your team can access them from anywhere.
One of the most useful features of Dropbox is the ability to share large files and backups. A basic account with 20 GB of traffic per day and two GB of online storage is free. To increase capacity, users can upgrade their accounts by paying a fee.
Often, it isn’t possible for all your team members to be in the same place at the same time. For such times, when you need to discuss matters over a video call, Appear.in can solve all your problems. A favorite app of many people, this business meeting tool allows you to create a meeting room in your browser and host up to eight people.
You don’t need to create an account and this tool doesn’t require any downloads or plugins. All you need to do is claim a meeting room as your own and everyone can connect via a text chat, audio or video. Also, you can share your screen, which makes Appear.in the perfect meeting tool when everyone’s located at different places.
A team messaging tool, Slack eliminates the need for long email threads and links by bringing all types of communication together. By reducing internal email, slack helps users streamline work and become more productive. Also, for particular departments or projects, you can organize team conversations into open or private channels.
An app that can be loaded onto both desktops and mobile devices, Slack integrates with file sharing programs such as Dropbox as well as with all social media platforms. Using this tool, you can drag, drop and share documents, PDFs, images and spreadsheets. Also, you can add flag messages or comments for future reference.