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Clearly Communicate, Closely Collaborate to Innovate

November 11, 2014 - 0 Comments

Innovation matters.
And innovation requires collaboration.
And collaboration requires clear communication.

Without clear communications, you open the door for all sorts of innovation-hindering situations: Miscommunications, misunderstandings, and misinterpretations. Errors, delays, and disagreements. 

forbes post 1c

Most of these issues are avoidable. And it doesn’t take magic. It’s actually pretty simple: Integrate video into your normal collaboration. There’s no longer a long list of reasons to limit video to the boardroom, executives, and special occasions. We’ve reached the intersection of low cost and high-quality.

The range of video options available now reaches from the pocket to the laptop to meeting rooms and all the way into immersive boardroom environments. Keep your fine tableware for holidays and special occasions if you’d like, but video no is no longer a special-occasion technology.

When it comes to technology, today’s reality brings video into reach across the org chart: high-quality video-conferencing equipment, simple applications, and powerful bandwidth. And on the (more important) human side of the equation, people are becoming more comfortable with video in their personal communications through consumer devices: smartphones, tablets.

forbest post 1b Video is making inroads into more elements of everyday business, and in different ways. In some respects, it’s a replacement for in-person communications. In others, it’s an augmentation of a formerly voice-only or e-mail exchange. From this perspective alone, consider the opportunity to to shorten the time between meetings, move from endless e-mail strings into ten-minute conversations, and all sorts of other productivity-enhancing benefits.

According to Dr. Jeffrey Polzer, UPS Foundation Professor of Human Resource Management at Harvard Business School, video serves as a “middle ground” between voice-only phone calls and in-person meetings. “Video adds an extra dimension to the amount of information people receive,” says Polzer in a recent Forbes Insight paper. “Video, with its face-to-face interaction, helps people read non-verbal signals, and helps build a sense of rapport.”

And there’s plenty of research to supports his position:

    • A survey of 1,007 executives finds that 78% of executives say online video is an effective tool for conducting business communications. (Wainhouse Research)
    • A recent study of 1,300 younger executives finds that 87% believe video has a significant and positive impact on an organization. (Cisco and Redshift Research)
    • 60% of the executives in the Cisco and Redshift survey consider video interaction important to their careers and businesses, citing as benefits the ability to read visual cues, “be there” without traveling, and share content in real time.

Video also provides access to all those non-verbal cues inherent in face-to-face communication. (This is important to remember if you’re prone to making faces in response to comments from others.) Kidding aside, video provide a way to improve both sides of the communications – speakers can better convey their intent, listeners can better understand it. And we can avoid all of those innovation-hindering situations and get back to business.

Interesting stuff? forbes post 1aDownload “Boost Innovation with Video Communications,” a paper from Forbes Insight to learn about eight ways you can use video to build business advantage, including enhancing productivity and communication, boosting customer satisfaction, and helping you identify new markets and opportunities.


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