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Video Calls for Business: Importance, Pros, and Cons
Do you guys remember The Jetsons? It was this animated sitcom of a futuristic family where video conferencing was a thing, and we were in awe because it was a world of science fiction. That’s right. Back in the day, video conferencing was just that - science fiction.
Fast-forward to the present day, can you really do your job without it?
Today, it’s become a crucial part of the business world. It has made our lives a hell of a lot easier by presenting countless opportunities - collaborating across locations and departments and engaging remote employees.
However, even though many seem to think that the advantages are obvious, others are still not the biggest of fans.
Let’s have a look at why some may love, and others may hate, the video conferencing technology.
The benefits of business video calls
The video calls can be implemented anytime during the workday. They will probably be shorter than face-to-face meetings, and everyone can go back to their work. Also, they are timed, which makes the participants be alert to the topic in discussion and focused. And not just that. An employee might have a sick child at home, and while they cannot attend a meeting in person, they might be able to attend a video call from home.
Travelling is costly. Imagine working with team members around the world. Plane tickets, hotel rooms, or car rentals are quite expensive (though we all miss them…). So all those airport delays and flight cancellations are a thing of the past and are no longer an excuse for missing out on meetings. In addition, even a trip downtown is a hassle. But those traffic jams are long gone, and we can finally get our beauty sleep.
Video calls give everyone a chance to work with people around the globe. If you have your own company, you can now hire anyone you want without asking them to move to another part of the world. Finally, students can study at their dream university. This is especially important for people living in locations with limited access to education.
Our new normal has imposed self-isolation and distancing to protect ourselves and everyone around us. Video calls enable us to stay in touch with colleagues and friends and help us continue doing our job in the process.
Video call recording
It sounds like an invasion of privacy, but if all participants agree, then it can be used as a great way to ensure the important points of the meetings are not missed. People won’t have to take notes and have their focus split between listening and writing down what’s being told.
Video conferencing is also making changes in the education of new hires, especially nowadays. With more and more people working remotely, video conferencing has proven itself to be an efficient and engaging way to train people.
Comparison to audio calls
Video calls take the audio ones to another level. If you are visible, you tend to use similar communication skills to the ones you use during face-to-face conversations. Seeing someone increases trust and helps businesses build personalized connections. After all, what are words without body language?
Even though there are great things about video conferencing, it’s still far from perfect. Let’s see where the video calls fall short.
Can cost money
You can always go with some cheaper versions or free ones, but that doesn’t come without limitations. Sometimes it’s better to invest, but in this case, that investment might cost you up to thousands of dollars. However, most companies are willing to pay to gain down the line.
The thing is, even the most expensive systems can have a downfall. Not just that, the internet connections aren’t that stable, especially these days when everyone is on the internet. Whenever this happens, everything gets delayed, which causes frustration. Video calls are much more demanding in terms of bandwidth.
And the distractions.
We all have to tidy up our room before a video call or make sure our partner or our cat is not in the background. Well, you know what I mean. We don’t have that problem with audio calls. However, I gotta say that cats and dogs are quite nice to look at during video chats.
If you work from an office, you can always pop into someone’s office and ask a quick question, or if you work in an open-plan office, they are probably right there next to you. However, video calls take a bit of planning. You have to text first and ask if they are available, wait for their reply, and then call. It’s a bit time-consuming.
Let’s say it’s more personal than audio calls but less personal than tête-à-tête talk. It’s the middle ground. Nevertheless, it’s still not enough. Even though people see each other on video calls, it still doesn’t substitute real handshakes. Well, it’s still better than nothing, right?
Every time someone tries to make a point or is in the middle of a heated discussion, the feedback is just not there, and it becomes a bit awkward for everyone. Why? Because of the time, delay between responses. The result is a boring and stilted conversation.
To sum up
To be honest, the video is the way to go. Yes, there are some things we need to consider - investment in technology, training employees to use it, adjusting the surroundings, etc., but businesses can only benefit from the advantages of video conferencing.
Also, there are many affordable tools like Chanty, that you can use. Not only do the video calls make communication easier, but it also provides a lot of benefits, such as increasing productivity within the company.
It’s safe to say, it’s a huge step in the right direction and will continue to improve as technology progresses. However, you don’t need to take my word for it. Try it out, and let me know how it goes. I’m really interested in your opinion.
About the author
Mia Naumoska is a Chief Marketing Officer at Chanty. This powerful and free Slack alternative is aimed to increase team productivity and improve communication at work. Having over a decade of experience in the marketing field, Mia is responsible for Chanty’s overall marketing strategy, managing an amazing team of marketing experts. She is also a coffee addict that loves travelling and exploring new things. Feel free to connect on LinkedIn.
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