Tag Archives: virtual collaboration

Live Web Events: Empowering Ourselves for Success

The decision to integrate web-conferencing or virtual events in my list of skills is proving to be a great decision! A consulting organization, which I am partnering with, is at the second stage of a competition for a large government contract that requires doing live training and meeting over the web. I have noticed over the last few months that such contracts are becoming increasingly popular.

I believe learning how to lead and participate in live web events is a definite way to empower ourselves for success in the future. What do you think? Please take a few seconds and answer the following two poll questions.

Thank you for your contribution.

Get Connected, Get productive – Mobility Not Required

Yesterday I had a wonderful meeting in my home office, with my Pajama-pants on, and no make-up. In this disorderly state, I was hesitant to poke my head outside, for fear that someone I know would see me. Fortunately, the members of my Church’s Communication Commission, with whom I was meeting virtually on WebEx, couldn’t see much below my shoulders; and if they could, I believe they wouldn’t care.

You see, we were connecting and getting some serious work done. Best of all, we did not have to take one step out of the convenience of our homes.

Below is shown the meeting window, with our agenda on PowerPoint, list of participants and a picture of me on Webcam (whenever someone speaks, he or she is shown on the screen).

webex-eg3

Meeting for approximately one hour, we accomplished various tasks. This included decided on a name for a newsletter and completely planning the first issue. Plus we had ample time to check-in with each other.

Just about everyone seems limited by time, money, transportation or mobility. That is certainly one reason why virtual collaboration is slowly taking over the world.

A stoke has limited my mobility somewhat, but not my ability to connect face to face with the world, and give my all for the good of the people and organizations I serve. I am committed to using and teaching others to use virtual technology (WebEx for the time being) to connect, accomplish the results they want in their lives, and to become a more productive contribution to themselves and the world.

How can virtual collaboration help you get more connected and productive?

Getting Buy-In for your Passion

I am as passionate about people using technology to serve others and access services remotely, as I am about the beauty and healing of yellow roses. I can get people to buy into the awesomeness of yellow roses, but getting people excited about my other passions is another story.

I was at a leadership meeting for an organization recently, and was all prepared to demonstrate and show the awesome value of remote participation. I mentioned my passion to three colleagues sitting near me, with emphasis on how this would benefit the organization’s need for volunteers.

One lady responded in a seemingly assertive voice and negative manner, saying that a lot of individuals do not have computers, and would not value remote participation. Those few words squashed any further desire for me to share my passion.

Was this woman the ‘awful passion buster’ I described or was the problem me? It was me. My insecurities were triggered, and I could not seize the opportunity to truly get buy-in for my passion.

I saw opposition because deep down, that is what I expected. Once my trigger shows up (in this case loud, aggressive speaking that does not support my idea), I think people are going to oppose me, so no matter what happens, I see opposition.

Consider that all I heard was a perspective, with no definitively declared opposition! What if I had just listened without judgement, acknowledge the truth in what was spoken, then offer some other truth in a complementary way? For example, what if I had said:  ‘good point – do you think it would be better if emphasis is placed on those who have the technology to volunteer remotely?’ If I asked such a question, would the discussion have turned out differently? I think so. Especially because I would be expecting a positive response, and that is what I would work to get.

The point is, people need to tell us how they see the value of our passion; it’s a more difficult road when we try to tell them. To get them to tell us, we must arm ourselves with questions that others are likely to respond to in a positive way. This, of course, does not include situations in which there is complete opposition, i.e. someone who absolutely hates roses. In that case, it’s a good idea to just keep our mouth shut.

Luckily, there are many other chances to get buy-in for our passion. At least this time, I was reminded to watch out for my triggers, oppose no one, and let them tell me the value of what I have to offer.

Now, will you help me learn further about my passion? If you work remotely (i.e. from home) what is the value? If you do not and would like to, why? If you do not and are not interested, why not?

Virtual Technology: Building A Dream Team for the Accomplishment of Our Vision

Basketball is a beautiful game, when the five players on the court play with one heartbeat.

The above are the words of Dean Smith (shown on the right with Michael Jordan), celebrated retired coach of men’s college basketball. He knew how to build championship players. Many of whom went on to play on the celebrated US Olympic dream teams (2012 team shown below), and are great examples for the world-class accomplishments we all seek in our lives.

One of my greatest desires in life, is to be a part of an unbeatable dream team, where each member functions as one heartbeat. I tasted that dream team yesterday evening, as I was sitting in my Markham  living room, strategizing and building a  team with two guys from New Jersey. We were touching each other, feeling each other, inspiring each other, as though we were right next to each other. We were using our individual talents to build the dream team that would create the future we dreamed of. That future involves bringing to the world, the exhilaration that we were experiencing in that very moment; that is, bringing virtual technology to the realization of all our visions, placing the global market place and talent pool at the finger tips of those who are seeking them.

After three exhilarating hours with my Jersey colleagues, I can say with little doubt what much of the world is aware of, but too fearful to act upon. That is, virtual technology is expanding our possibilities, beyond many of our wildest imaginations. We are no longer limited by geographic boundaries; in fact, our playground for growing ourselves, building dream teams, growing audiences, and reinventing ourselves, have vastly expanded.

Going Virtual: Developing People Over There from Right Here

Type of screen on which virtual participants were projected.

Two Weeks ago, I attended the 2012 International Black Summit (IBS) in Birmingham, Alabama. I watched my fellow  facilitators masterfully help a young lady, who was sitting in her Toronto living room, deal with the realities of herself and the job to which she was so devoted.  Projected on a screen, in front of the room, the young lady poured out her dilemma to a room full of participants in Birmingham. Her tear-filled words seemed to touch every heart in the room and kept my own eyes and ears transfixed by what was happening. With a microphone in hand, each facilitator, with their eyes glued to the young lady, took turn guiding her to the answers that would transform her.

It did not take long for me to realize that I was witnessing the realization of a vision I have held for the last few years: small businesses and non-profit organizations reaching remote participants around the world, and interacting with them, as though they are right in front of them. Now I can more forcefully say, no matter where they are, if individuals can’t physically attend an event because of ability, distance, cost, responsibilities, etc., they can take advantage of the increasingly powerful, virtual participation.

I heard and saw the virtual IBS participants from Canada and others parts of the U.S., as they were projected into the room. I was present to God and the opportunities to realize whatever vision we set our hearts to. Just put it out there, do the work and stand, and keep doing the work and keep standing, until the vision manifests.

As I sit here now, I see a vision of thousands of organizations making their professional development events virtually accessible around the globe (including best in-class live virtual interaction), as the IBS achieved two weeks ago. I also see myself sitting here in front of my computer in Markham, Ontario, enabling others (people down the road, elsewhere in Toronto, from another place in Canada, or from another country) to deliver virtually accessible events  from right where they are.

What about you? What do you have to offer the world? What can you do to develop people around the world, from right where you are?