It may surprise you to know that teleconferencing is not restricted to the business world. Many individuals use this as an invaluable tool to communicate thoughts and ideas over great distances.
It is not too difficult to set up a conference. Something as simple as a two way telephone system is relatively cheap. No specialized equipment is necessary as each individual uses his own phone or extension to participate in the meeting.
Speaker phones can be used but many people complain of the ‘echo’ effect. It also picks up peripheral noises like the shuffling of papers and tapping of pens on desktops. It may be necessary to invest in microphone headsets which would also free the user to move around mid meeting.
Costs vary according to the complexity of the set-up. The more locations to be used, the more expensive it becomes. For example, satellite connections, television facilities etc., will add significantly to the cost.
There are specialized companies who will co-ordinate all purchases of equipment andor services – again adding to overall cost of the initial set-up.
You can add web conferencing software to your system to enable you to show presentations and demonstrations. This will give an overall professional look and feel to the conference. Be sure to practice with it before the event – inefficiency is something you don’t want to portray!
Teleconferencing can be as simple or as elaborate as you wish to make it. It all depends on your needs or the needs of your company.