How Coordinated Technology Makes Your Company the Star of the Show… or Conference Call
By Brad Lewis, CTS-D | Vice President, Technology + Acoustics Practice Lead
Imagine this… you’re running late for a meeting… you are a flurry of paper, coffee and panic running to get to the conference room.
“Move Gerald! I’m LAAAATE!” you scream as the doors to the conference room swing shut.
With seconds to spare, you arrive, only to find out the meeting hasn’t even started yet. IT was just called to wrangle the tech because a) no one knew how to start the web-based meeting program, b) not everyone could connect, and c) your guy “in-the-field” keeps causing an annoying feedback because he joined on his cell phone.
“Ugh! Not again,” you moan.
How long, on average, does it take your typical meeting to start? 5, 10, 15 minutes? Meetings should start on-time, right? So, what happened? Technology is supposed to make us faster, smarter and more connected. However, most of us are still trying to figure out our personal gadgets let alone new tech in our companies. By the way, have you seen all the new and cool stuff the iPhone X does?! But I digress.
In a perfect world, we show up on-time, all tech works, we have our meetings and we move on.
But if we can’t keep up with our tech, how can we make it work to the benefit of others? Technology MUST work for us, not against us.
The End is NOT Nigh
Dread not. There is a solution. As the leader of the Technology + Acoustics (T+A) Practice at M.E. GROUP, my team’s job is to make our customer’s lives easier and to help them figure out how to cut out the pre-meeting tech rodeo.
In fact, I find it very satisfying when clients and co-workers alike say, “this is why we keep you around, Brad.” Thank you… I think?
The T+A Practice helps our customers in a variety of ways including coordinating technology with architecture and furniture selections, planning Wi-Fi distribution and safely connecting room and building elements to automate meeting startup functions. Ensuring these areas are in-sync, quicker set-up and consistent meeting start times, allows our customers to shine.
Through careful coordination, I’ve successfully helped American Century Investments, The University of Kansas, Kansas City Orthopedic Institute, and other partners solve their tech and acoustics problems; even before they knew they had them.
What’s in a Room?
Quick and agile technology is just one part of the equation. When creating a meeting room, we also help companies consider:
- Where should the screen be placed in the room?
- The human eye is an amazing device, but we’re expecting the ‘other’ side to see us through an artificial lens. How do we adjust technology to meet our expectations?
- Can they see a white board?
- What does the backdrop look like? Should it be branded?
- Colors, patterns? Are greys the answer? Video conference cameras can’t decode as well as our eyes / brain.
- Does the tech in conference room A operate the same as collaboration space B?
- Where should people direct their attention? At the screen at the front of the room, or a presenter wandering around in the middle of a room?
- Does the scope of the technology match the room it’s in?
A Digital First Impression
Something else to consider: your company’s first impression. We can help with that, too. Anymore, that first experience someone has of your company is not walking through the doors and being greeted by a receptionist. It’s joining a tele-conference meeting and seeing your conference room as their first view of your brand. If your meeting is running late when you invite them digitally into your company, and it’s hard to see you because of too much glare, what impression does that give?
But I, again, digress. As you can tell, there’s a lot to consider and plan for technology-wise in new buildings, retrofits and everything in between. Luckily for our customers, we understand their technology and acoustics needs, and are here to help you stay ahead of your corporate tech. I’ve seen most of it all before and there isn’t a “problem” I can’t fix.
Technology needs? We can help you. We are improving life through a better built (digital) environment.
As for the crinkling of chip bags during lunch n’ learns, side conversations and vibrating mobile devices on the conference table, don’t ask me…I’ve been trying to solve this for years!
With a true passion for all things Technology and Acoustics, Brad leads this service group for M.E. GROUP. A natural collaborator, with an extensive background working in education and corporate environments, Brad strives to achieve a tightly integrated design that enables seamless coordination between the design team and the owner’s IT Department. He is an advocate for flexibility in design and has a vision that offers best results and also provides efficient spaces for learning, collaborating and working.