Opinion: Page (1) of 4 - 09/28/01 Email this story to a friend. email article Print this page (Article printing at MyDmn.com).print page facebook

Are There Vultures Among Us?

Is The Recent Re-Emergence of Videoconferencing Suspect? By Max Kopsho
It's almost impossible to do anything today without thinking of the current economic situation and even more difficult putting out of mind the recent tragedies that struck our nation in New York, Washington D.C. and in Pennsylvania. I won't even try. So let's talk about what I've noticed since then. I know I'm not the only one who has noticed and I'm sure I won't be the only to write about it, but here goes. I've noticed that videoconferencing has become the top buzzword again. I just hope that it is not because we have vultures among us in the AV industry that are preying on the fear factor across the nation, our world for that matter, in regards to travel. I hope that it is out of the true emergence of a valid necessity and a solution that has finally met its time. I hope that it is because during this economic downturn people are looking for an alternative to travel that meets all of their requirements.

So what are the reasons videoconferencing seems to be flourishing when so many other technologies are being challenged? The following will be the world according to Max and five reasons why I think videoconferencing is having its hay day.

Reason #1: It's cost effective! Duh!!! I know how much I hate reading the obvious but stay with me, there's more. As part of being cost effective we can see these benefits in a different light.

Cost effectiveness:

- Less trips to a given single location. While it is obvious that would be a cost savings, you may also want to take into account that you can "face to face" with this same customer more often than if you didn't have videoconferencing

- You'll never replace the importance of a firm handshake and some good old eye contact; but even though you are traveling to them less, your customer will realize they are getting more attention from you than they ever had.

- If you are considering reducing your travel here are two ways to look at it: You can just add up all your trips and subtract a few out and come up with a new reduced budget or you can keep the same number of proposed trips but visit a broader base of customers/potential customers - then you get to calculate the return on investment. The later of the two is my preference. I have an easier time asking for the same budget and being able to say that I'll be able to do more this time around. I have a hard time asking for less money.

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