What is your Organization’s Attitude to Video?

466070725Attitude is everything.

This phrase is typically a personal statement illustrating how your state of mind affects your life.  The same is true in the corporate world, however, to express the collective attitude of the company, the word “attitude” is substituted with the word “culture”.

The corporate equivalent to “Attitude is everything” is “Culture trumps strategy”, or a similar phrase implying that to change the state of an organization, the culture cannot be ignored.

Attitude or culture on its own won’t lead to success.  Culture is a catalyst that will either enable or encumber plans and initiatives.  You still need plans, actions and strategies, but if you have a poor attitude or corporate culture towards an initiative, the chances of success will be hampered and often times derailed.

“Attitude is Everything: Change Your Attitude … Change Your Life!” is the name of a book by Jeff Keller.  The book talks about how taking control of your attitude can unleash your incredible potential.   Some of us may intuitively be doing the things that enable a healthy attitude but most of us need to become consciously aware of what type of thinking leads to a good attitude.

The same is true in the corporate world; every company has a culture or collective attitude.  The culture of the company is probably the biggest influencer of reaction to change.  Change of direction; change of process; change in reaction to just about anything.

We live in a time where change is taking place at an exponential rate.  This has never happened in history before.  And when change is happening at a faster and faster pace, if your organization isn’t keeping pace, then you are falling behind more and more, every day.

The attitude to change within a corporation is critical to the corporation’s survival.

Technology has been the catalyst for the increased rate of change and new technology developments are not slowing down.  Industries are changing drastically and there are winners and losers.

How is your organization dealing with the increased rate of change?  Is your corporate culture hindering you?

Collaboration technologies leverage the knowledge of the employees and partners of the organization to evolve and adapt to the changing world.  Organizations that collaborate better perform 3 to 6 times better than their competitors.

But only 3% of companies today are advanced collaborators and 75% have either an unsupported or non-integrated collaboration environment.

Is your organization using collaboration tools to become a better organization? 

Video Communication

Video communication is one of the real-time collaboration tools enabling organizations to transform themselves.

There are many successful video deployments and many unsuccessful video deployments.  Whether a deployment is successful or unsuccessful ultimately can be traced to the corporate culture or attitude of an organization toward evolving to video communications.

Just as Jeff Keller says that we can personally “change our attitude and change our life”, by taking control of our attitude, the same is true with the corporate attitude or culture toward video. Taking control of the corporate attitude to a new way of communicating can unleash the tremendous collaborative benefit of video communication.

Two Ways to Affect Culture

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Corporate culture can be changed from either a top down or a bottoms-up approach.  The top down approach is either forced by some kind of crisis, e.g. a massive financial loss, or a strong mandate or forced march, directly from the CEO to affect change, where there is no option but to ride the wave of change.

Cisco sells video technology and yet a few years ago, its employees were still traveling a lot for internal meetings.  CEO John Chambers mandated that the company would cut 65% of its travel budget – no questions asked.  Employees had to adopt the company’s own video technology to be able to still effectively operate as if they were meeting in person.  Effective deployment and adoption of the technology was not up for debate.

Today the use of collaborative tools like WebEx and Telepresence are commonplace at Cisco and they have well over 10 million minutes per month of collaborative meetings globally.

Bottoms-up adoption of collaborative technology is set in motion when the right technology tools are placed in the hands of workers eager to adopt it.  As the use of the tool proliferates and its value is appreciated, it can rapidly expand and collaboration flourishes.

At CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research, they have a successful bottoms-up deployment of video communication.  They have thousands of workers from around the world who collaborate on a daily basis.  Their use of collaborative technologies is part of the day-to-day fabric of how the organization operates.  Check out their live daily usage of video conferencing technologies here.

Clearing the Hurdles to Effective Video Communication

Making a video call is not as easy as making a phone call for the vast majority of people.  But for me, in my organization, it is easier – with just 2 clicks I am connected.

It can become easy if you and your colleagues are using common tools and have taken the time and had the patience to get used to the new, richer communication tool.  Once it starts to get ingrained and takes off, your organization will start to see the many benefits.

Before you get started, be warned, there are a number of hurdles that you will have to clear.

Organizational Hurdles to Widespread Video Adoption:

  1. Lack of Executive sponsorship / commitment
  2. Technology capability not in place, e.g. network capacity
  3. Right technology framework for your organization
  4. No investment in User Adoption

Personal Hurdles that Detract from Video Adoption:

  1. People don’t like how they look on camera
  2. People who are used to audio conference calls, where they go on mute and work away on other things during the call, resist the move to video because they can’t get work done on a video call.  Because they have to pay attention.
  3. People stumble once with the technical set-up and they won’t try again
  4. Personal technology set-up, microphones, speakers and displays need to be conducive to working in this new way

These obstacles are not all that daunting, but it will take effort to clear the hurdles.  And the right cultural attitude to embracing this challenge will make all the difference.  Remember the statement at the top of this blog about how highly evolved collaborative organizations outperform their peers by 3 to 6 times.

That Holy Grail is worth the effort!

In a recent whitepaper called, “Driving Productivity with a Video-Enabled Workforce”, Frost & Sullivan concluded with the following …

“Businesses are undergoing a fundamental change today. In the past few years, cost reduction and cost management have been the focus. While no one expects this to change, there is growing need to increase value and drive growth through enhanced productivity. As a result, it is critical that businesses deploy collaboration technologies that drive sustainable growth and productivity gains; foster innovation; and build agile and globally responsive organizations. Video conferencing will play a critical role in empowering the high-performance workplace of tomorrow.  It is helping businesses get battle-ready for the demands placed by today’s complex, competitive and economic challenges. There has never been a greater need or a better time to start.”

Is it time to change your organization’s attitude to video?

Contact me to discuss your situation.

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