Virtual Meetings and Video Conferencing: The modern solution to the modern problem


Getting up at 6am, rushing through the morning routine, skipping breakfast and looking forward (not) to the long morning commute and using (read: killing) those 2 long hours to listen to the latest podcast or a new book or watch a new video or tap to the beats or simply sleep. That sprinkled with a prayer to your favourite God to not rain and for there to be no traffic jams. Despite all this, you are exactly 5mins late to the meeting and you shall have the honour of greeting a grumpy boss. Sounds familiar? Or maybe not? Oh well, welcome to the new normal where meetings happen virtually, shopping happens virtually, invites happen virtually and even studying happens remotely. The past 2 years have witnessed an astronomical increase in both work from home and study from home. Remote examinations were unheard of in the academic history until it suddenly became the norm.

The conduct of in-person meetings in the workplace has undergone a significant transformation as a result of COVID-19 and the supporting technological developments throughout time. COVID-19 proved to us that virtual reality is a thing and work can happen, remote or not! Companies scrambled to find alternatives to in-person office and at the same time, make it work. This is where Teams, Google Meet and Zoom platforms lent a helping hand. Nobody could have imagined that friendly chats using digital tools would turn into sober boardroom conferences or online classes. The web and video conferencing market increased 500% in the first two months of the COVID-19 pandemic(1). Zoom generated $2.6 billion revenue in 2020, a 317 percent year-on-year rise, with meeting participants soaring by 2,900 percent(2).

Virtual meetings have opened up a whole new world of business, allowing parent businesses with branches all over the world to make decisions quickly, efficiently, and effectively. Further, it has been observed that audience are more actively engaged in virtual meetings vis-à-vis face-to-face meetings.

Homes were converted into co-working spaces. Dining tables and kitchen countertops served as desks. Kids and family had the joy of seeing their parents or children at home, which in turn led to an increase in family bonding. Lunches and dinners became a joyous affair. But all this at the cost of what? Professional and personal life started blending together and soon work encroached on private time. Office calls never seemed to end when earlier, the moment you step out of your office, your time was your own and you were not obliged to be answerable to anyone. This means you end up working longer than usual which leads to burnout. Suddenly, your house no longer resembles the sanctuary that it was. Human beings are social animals and the lack of in-person contact with teammates can wreak havoc in their lives.

With the opening of companies and recalling of employees, we now see happy smiles and enthusiastic waves, but let us not forget that there are some of us who still prefer virtual connections and work from home. It is high time that companies become flexible and provide the option to choose. Then, maybe, just maybe, we won’t see people groaning and grumbling on Sunday nights.

The ongoing pandemic situation has created a new normal and has further upended how businesses operate. The need of the hour has pushed more and more companies to move their products and services online in order to stay relevant. Video marketing, Influencer marketing and Visual search are some of the major digital marketing trends being used.

All said and done, every system comes with its own set of default pros and cons. Virtual meetings and video conferencing did really solve certain unanticipated problems while throwing at us some new ones. But that is why it is said that the grass is always greener on the other side.

(1) 84 Video Conferencing Statistics for the 2021 Market (trustradius.com), last visited on 02.10.22.
(2)Covid Impact On Meeting Apps: Google Meet, Zoom, Microsoft Teams Never Had It Better (cnbctv18.com), last visited on 01.10.22.